Reading Time: 2 minutes The farming community believes it is 'unfairly vilified' (Photo: Viva!)
Reading Time: 2 minutes

A farming boss has complained about the amount of media attention given to vegans – saying it shouldn’t be the same as that allocated to farmers.

Patrick Kent is the president of the Irish Cattle and Sheep Farmers’ Association (ICSA). Speaking to media outlet Agriland, he claimed farmers are being vilified in today’s society, and should be given more respect.

Kent spoke about veganism and animal rights, as well as subsidies, saying it’s unfair that farmers are portrayed as ‘needing [Government] handouts’ and that they should be ‘resourced sufficiently’ in order to deal with the challenges of extreme weather conditions like snow or drought. He said that dealing with ‘depleting fodder stocks’ had left many at their ‘wits’ end’.


Kent also talked about how the rise of veganism – which he describes as a ‘false ideology’ – and said that ‘vegan and animal rights groups shouldn’t get an equal amount of airplay as farmers on television or radio debates’.

He said: “They are selling false ideologies and that is very unfair to farmers and farmers are hurting from that sort of misrepresentation. Farmers are doing everything they can.”

He later added: “The misinformation is being peddled by some media and then you have the keyboard warriors who think they are so brave. The level of vilification is gone out of control on social media.”

‘Terrified of the truth’

High profile vegan Juliet Gellatley is the Founder and Director of leading animal protection Viva! The charity often exposes extremely grim condition in farming – including in its recent investigation of Hogwood Pig Farm. Some of the photos from the facility were so distressing, The Daily Mail said it could not share them.

She claims it is animal agriculture which is telling lies, telling Plant Based News: “Dairy farmers and the Tory Government have ignored all science on the badger cull and so it is they who live in the land of false ideology, peddling lies and profiting from death.

“Of course they want vegans to be censored – they are terrified of the truth of the dire impact of consuming animals to be absorbed into the public’s consciousness and for the food revolution to continue at a pace.”

Maria Chiorando

Maria is a news and features writer for Plant Based News. As a former magazine editor, newspaper reporter, and features writer, her work has been published by The Guardian, The Huffington Post, and various regional newspapers, as well as Vegan Life magazine and Vegan Trade Journal. She has interviewed a huge range of people, from Prime Ministers to authors, activists, pop stars and actors, and enjoys the varied range of topics writing for PBN allows her to tackle. She was previously the editor of Plant Based News for over 3 years.