Animal Aid

MARCH IS VEGGIE MONTH! ANIMAL AID CALLS ON MOTHERS TO GO DAIRY-FREE

Posted 16 March 2001
Milk leaflet

Animal Aid, the UK's largest animal rights pressure group, is launching a campaign against the suffering and exploitation inflicted on cows and their calves by dairy farmers.

Timed to coincide with Mothering Sunday, Animal Aid is calling on shoppers to think about the way dairy farmers routinely break the mother/baby bond when separating cow and calf within a day of the mother giving birth.

A graphic new Animal Aid leaflet, called The Milk of Human Kindness, will be distributed outside churches and supermarkets throughout the UK on March 25, along with samples of dairy-free chocolates, by way of a suggestion for a kinder gift this Mothers' Day.

Campaigners will provide an early taster - at 11 a.m. on Friday 23 March - at St Paul's Churchyard, Covent Garden.

Animal Aid will also be exposing as a sham the 'healthy' image of milk touted by the industry. Milk is the most common food allergen for children. It is linked with childhood diabetes and is a less than ideal source of calcium. In addition, traces of pus and blood cells may legally be present in milk sold for human consumption, along with antibiotic residues used to treat infections that are endemic within British herds.

When it comes to animal suffering, the dairy industry has much to answer for. Cows are kept on an unnatural high protein diet and on a constant cycle of pregnancies in order to produce vast quantities of milk.

Around 20% of UK dairy cows are lame at any given time. In every 100 cows, between 30 to 60 cases of mastitis (an acutely painful infection of the udder) are found annually. And infertility, a consequence of the high intensity regime, is a growing problem.

Government and industry expressions of regret over animals destroyed during the current foot and mouth outbreak, contrast with the two million baby calves incinerated in recent times to prop up a cattle industry devastated by the self-inflicted BSE crisis.

Said Kay Holder, Animal Aid's vegetarian campaigner:

"The routine suffering of dairy cows and their calves is one of the biggest, dirtiest secrets of the modern farming industry. Consumers can't hear the heartrending calls of mothers in search of their lost young - but this Mothers' Day, we're asking them to remember the suffering and choose dairy-free."

Animal Aid's Veggie Hotline 01732 354 032 is open throughout March so that members of the public can order free recipe and information packs.

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