Presenter Coleen Nolan has urged the public to research the dairy industry after defending Animal Rebellion protestors.
She made the comments on Monday’s episode of the popular ITV talk show Loose Women, which saw the panelists debate the tactics employed by the Extinction Rebellion-affiliated activists.
As part of its Plant Based Future campaign, Animal Rebellion has been disrupting the supply of dairy throughout the UK.
One of the organization’s most highly publicized methods is its “milk pours.” These see protestors enter supermarkets in the UK and pour milk onto the floor.
It has also been using blockade-style tactics to stop dairy from being transported around the country.
Coleen Nolan defends Animal Rebellion
“They’ve been trying to get their point across and no one’s listening, so they do something like this and every show is talking about them, which brings your attention to the plight that they are fighting for,” Nolan said.
She added that she doesn’t agree with vandalism, but that she understands that “the only way they get talked about or their issues get talked about is when they do something extreme, which is what we are doing now.”
Nolan’s fellow panelist Jane Moore disagreed, pointing out that their controversial tactics could alienate the public from their cause.
To this, Nolan, who is a vegan, replied: “Yes, but maybe, the public, what they should do is really research into what they are protesting about. Because if you see some of the stuff that I have seen, it’s horrific.”
“Animal welfare, if you see some of the videos that I have now seen, you’ll be horrified.”
She added that she understands why people don’t want to watch animal abuse footage, but urged people to do so anyway to get an idea of where their food really comes from.
The reality of the dairy industry
Dairy is linked with animal cruelty and environmental destruction.
It’s responsible for around four percent of global greenhouse gas emissions. It also contributes to deforestation, land use, and resource depletion.
Cows exploited for their milk live miserable lives. They are repeatedly artificially impregnated each year, and each time, they have their calves taken from them. Mother cows have been known to bellow and cry out for days after they’re gone.
Dairy cows have also been selectively bred to produce more milk than they naturally would. This means that they often suffer from an udder inflammation called mastitis.
When their bodies are worn out, they will be sent to the slaughterhouse.
Protests in the UK
Animal Rebellion, which was set up in 2019, has two demands that it wants the government to adhere to. Firstly, to transition the country to a plant-based future. Secondly, to rewild all of the land previously used by animal agriculture.
There have also been a number of other highly-publicized protests from eco groups Just Stop Oil and Insulate Britain in recent weeks.
Much of their tactics rely on blocking roads, something the government is attempting to crack down on with its controversial Public Order Bill. This bill introduces a new offense of obstructing major transport networks.
Most recently, Just Oil activists also threw tomato soup over a Van Gogh painting in the National Gallery. This was covered by a layer of protective glass and not damaged.
Speaking in the House of Commons on Tuesday (October 18), former Home Secretary Suella Braverman, (who resigned on Wednesday, October 19) reeled off a list of people she thinks are to blame for such protests.
“Yes, I’m afraid, it’s the Labour Party, it’s the Lib Dems, it’s the coalition of chaos, it’s the Guardian-reading, tofu-eating wokerati, dare I say, the anti-growth coalition that we have to thank for the disruption that we are seeing on our roads today,” she said.
However, speaking to Plant Based News (PBN) before the campaign started, an Animal Rebellion spokesperson said that the disruption will continue until the government meets its demands.
“Disruption is not a brief event, this is the beginning of an escalation that we will continue until a major change is achieved,” they said.