Heather Mills McCartney Speaks at Viva! Dinner

Release date: 
Sunday, December 17, 2006

Hi-res photos from the event are available for download: http://www.viva.org.uk/fundraiser2006

Principal speaker at the annual Christmas fund-raising dinner of vegetarian campaigns group Viva! was its patron Heather Mills McCartney. The event took place at the Merchants' Hall, Clifton, Bristol on the evening of December 16. Also addressing the 100 plus audience were leading defence barrister Micha el Mansfield QC and television presenter Wendy Turner-Webster.

In one of her first public appearances in recent months, Ms Mills McCartney talked of her impatience to return to representing Viva! and campaigning to end the barbaric cruelty handed out to farmed animals. She revealed that she will be supporting Viva!'s New Year campaign to end the use of the cruel and restrictive, metal-barred farrowing crate in which most mother pigs are imprisoned to give birth. She also stressed the vital role that Viva! plays in helping to publicise the global devastation caused by livestock farming and in helping concerned people change to a plant-based diet.

Ms Mills McCartney said: "'Pigs are intelligent, playful animals and nothing can excuse the way they are treated on Britain's farms. I'm 100 per cent behind Viva! and their campaign to end the cruelty.

'the thought of mother pigs who have just given birth being crammed into metal crates appalls me. How can we call ourselves a nation of animal lovers when we allow this to happen''

She concluded her speech by highlighting the environmental impact of livestock " responsible for more global warming gases than all the world's transport:

'the evidence has been stacking up for years now " livestock farming is one of the greatest threats to the planet. It is unbelievably cruel, it is at the heart of every big environmental problem and the meat and dairy products that result are destroying our health.

"We almost have a Fawlty Towers situation. The world is collapsing but no one is prepared to be honest about one of the principal reasons " ssshh, don't mention the meat! Livestock is at the heart of the world's big environmental catastrophes but almost no one is prepared to stand up and say so. Viva! does and that's why I am putting my full support behind them.'

Viva!'s founder and director, Juliet Gellatley, reviewed the year's campaigning, highlighting its investigations and reports into UK pig and dairy farming, called Piggles and The Dark Side of Dairy. Clips were shown from undercover filming showing the widespread disease and dejection suffered by both species. Ms Gellatley also referred to the White Lies scientific report, produced by Viva!'s sister charity, the Vegetarian & Vegan Foundation. She stressed the overwhelming evidence that milk and dairy products are not health foods but are linked to degenerative diseases, including heart disease and some cancers.

Ms Gellatley said: "There are some things in life so disturbing and the implications so profound that when you discover them you have to act. Dairy farming, factory farming and slaughter are three of them. We cannot continue to abuse animals, the planet and our own health through what we eat and it's why Viva! campaigns to change the world.'

Hi-res photos from the event are available for download: http://www.viva.org.uk/fundraiser2006

For further information contact Juliet Gellatley or Tony Wardle on 0117 944 1000.

8 York Court, Wilder Street
Bristol BS2 8QH Tel: 0117 944 1000