Sofia Fernandes Pontes and Steve Bone, two UK activists from the group Animal Rebellion, have been charged after causing damage to two high-end supermarkets in London, UK, on 7th October 2022. As a protest, they emptied cow’s milk onto the floor in both Selfridges and Fortnum & Mason. The activists were subsequently arrested and charged with criminal damage, both over and under £5000, and theft.
Animal Rebellion’s Plant-Based Future campaign includes activists disrupting the supply of dairy in the UK to protest against the damage caused by animal agriculture to both animals and the planet, and to urge the government to move towards a vegan food system and rewild agricultural land. This year, Animal Rebellion activists have disrupted the trooping the colour ceremony at the Queen’s platinum jubilee celebrations, invaded the track at the Epsom Derby horse race, emptied milk bottles onto the floor in the food hall at Harrods department store in London, glued themselves to a Müller dairy facility in Droitwich, Worcestershire, and damaged milk trucks.
Fernandes Pontes said to Plant-Based news: “My actions on Friday reflect the severity of the climate, ecological, and animal emergencies, but they also represent the massive hope I have that we can turn the corner and step into a better world. I took action because I believe change is possible, but only if Liz Truss and Ranil Jayawardena step up and make the bold decision to support a plant-based future.” The reference to Liz Truss is because she was prime minister at the time, and although she only lasted a few weeks in her post, her government indicated that would drop any proposed bans on animal protection issues. It remains to be seen if the new Prime Minister, Rishi Sunak, may have the same anti-animal policies, but it appears that he supports the shooting industry and has shown support to pro-hunt organisations, which is not a good sign.