PRESS RELEASE - 4 December 1998
Who loves ya, Babe?
The porcine, perky pinky called Babe, is back and taking Britain by storm. A campaigning vegetarian, Babe has now produced a recipe book, Babe's Country Cookbook, to help his adoring young audiences to challenge the `Established Order of Things' and go meat-free.
Babe is the focus of a save the pig campaign by Viva!. Supporters of the vegetarian and animal rights organisation are handing out leaflets to cinema goers and young people all over Britain.
"Who loves ya, Babe?" asks the leaflet. "We do, that's why we don't eat ya", comes the answer. A talking piglet goes on to describe what life is really like for millions of real-life porkers who are slaughtered for pork, bacon, ham and sausages. It also gives Ten Reasons to Go Veggie with Babe and offers Babe's Country Cookbook for sale from Viva!.
"Children often don't know that bacon comes from pigs. They are genuinely shocked to find that the Babe's of this world are only bred to be slaughtered and eaten", says Juliet Gellatley, Viva!'s director.
Britain's pig producers are holding their breath, afraid that Babe will again do for pig meat sales what Chernobyl did for lamb and BSE for beef. Viva! reckons they have every reason to be worried. Juliet Gellatley says: "When the first Babe film was released we had reports from all over Britain of kids vowing they'd never again eat pigs - or any other animals for that matter". Pig meat sales dropped by 20% in the USA and 10% in the UK following vigorous campaigning by Viva!. "This film is doing for vegetarianism what the double roll-over did for the Lottery", she adds.
"When we show children the conditions in which pigs are kept they are horrified. To see highly intelligent-creatures crammed into filthy, barren pens where they can barely move and have nothing to do disgusts them. It should disgust everyone," adds Ms Gellatley. "If Babe draws attention to the way we treat other living creatures then it will, in our book, be the film of the year - maybe the decade!"
The leaflets are being distributed nationwide outside cinemas and in High Streets throughout December and January.
Babe's Country Cookbook, hardback, with 80 vegetarian recipes, colour photos and stories from Babe and friends, is £14.99 plus £2 p&p from Viva!, 8 York Court, Wilder Street, Bristol BS2 8QH. Tel: 0117 944 1000.
For a copy of Babe's introduction to his vegetarian recipe book or for further information contact: Juliet Gellatley or Lesley Jeavons on 0117 944 1000.