Vegetarians International Voice for Animals

Fight against 'Extreme Cruelty' in Guildford

Release date: 
Thursday, February 4, 2010

A Guildford born man is calling for a local business* to stop selling 'exotic meat'. Justin Kerswell, who lived in the Surrey town for twenty years, has for the last five years spear-headed a campaign by national animal welfare organisation Viva! to end the sale of kangaroo, zebra and other so-called exotic meats across Britain. Mr Kerswell has written to Extreme Guildford (in North Street), with details of the extensive cruelty, and environmental concerns, involved in the slaughter of wildlife for meat and asked them to stop serving it. Viva! is especially worried by the collapse of kangaroo numbers in Australia, caused by a catastrophic drought and a commercial kill of over four million in 2009 (up by nearly 500,000 on the year before). Official figures show that there are less than half as many kangaroos in Australia today as there were in 2001. Viva! maintains that businesses selling 'exotic' meat could eventually contribute to the extinction of several species. "I'm sure that this new venture in Guildford doesn't want to be associated with destroying wildlife and animal cruelty. Every year, millions of kangaroos are shot in the wild, at night - unmonitored and out of sight of any witnesses. The worst cruelty of all is reserved for baby 'joeys', hundreds of thousands of whom are killed by being stamped on, smashed against wheel braces, by being decapitated or left to die of starvation in the bush. The story is little better for other animals that are being ripped from their natural habitat and treated as novelty meat. Surely they deserve better'" says Viva! campaigns manager Mr Kerswell. "Wildlife belongs in the wild, not on people's dinner plates. What next' Tiger chops, dolphin steaks and koala burgers' If people want the kind of rush Extreme Guildford advertise, how about they get it by saving animals rather than helping push them down the road to extinction' Of course, eating any animal causes suffering - the best way to stop cruelty is to go vegetarian." Notes for editors * http://www.facebook.com/group.php'gid=73082152505 Images of kangaroos and kangaroo shooting are available from Viva! Viva! has campaigned against the destruction of wildlife for meat for many years and has persuaded all major supermarkets to withdraw exotic meats from sale. The only outlets now selling wild animals is a small chain of pubs and a few bistros and independent butchers. The outspoken group has also played a major part in the collapse of the UK ostrich industry, which has gone from sunrise to sunset in a few short years. For more information on Viva!'s campaign against the sale of so-called 'exotic meat' visit www.viva.org.uk/campaigns/exoticmeat/index.htm or www.savethekangaroo.com. For more information about this media release contact press officer Helen Rossiter by calling 0117 970 4637 or email press@viva.org.uk or campaigns manager Justin Kerswell by calling 0117 944 1000 or emailing justin@viva.org.uk. For out of hours media enquires please call 0794 453 3021.