'Overstepping the mark': Young farmer speaks of death threats from vegans

Some farmers "can't sleep at night" due to the threats from activists
Some farmers "can't sleep at night" due to the threats from activists

A young farmer from Northumberland has spoken to the BBC about the death threats she has received from vegans.

Alison Waugh, a trainee farmer in Northumberland, spoke to the Victoria Derbyshire programme on BBC Two.

She said vegan activists have called her a "murderer" and "rapist", and has received death threats due to her work.

"When you're being called murderers and rapists, that is overstepping the mark, for fairly obvious reasons," Ms Waugh told the BBC.

She said it is "quite ironic" that vegans want peace for animals, but then send messages like "I hope you and your family go die in a hole for what you do".

She added: "You've got people storming the meat mart, spraying graffiti...that's when it's not OK, when you've got people worrying if their cows are going to be safe tonight."

The National Pig Association is one farming organisation which has faced vegan activists.

It claims its members "cannot sleep at night" because they have allegedly turned up at farms and slaughterhouses at night.

Rearing pigs

The debate surrounding vegan activism surfaced on national television last week, when ITV presenter Piers Morgan clashed with a vegan who backed a petition, attracting 35,000 signatures, to ban a school rearing pigs for food and farming education.

On last Tuesday's (23 January) Good Morning Britain, Piers and co-host Susanna Reid spoke to the headteacher of Priestlands school in Lymington, Hampshire, which received the petition calling it to stop rearing pigs for meat.

Headteacher Chris Willsher told Piers and Susanna that the school has received death threats from vegans unhappy with the school's move.

The school has since stopped rearing pigs on its grounds, but will launch a future consultation with parents about re-introducing them.

The surge in vegan activism has prompted the farming industry to fight back, most notably with a new dairy campaign aiming to take place throughout the whole of February called 'FebruDairy'.

The dairy industry has also been urged to 'Tell it Like it Is' in new industry initiative to help communicate the positives of milk.