Animal welfare campaigners protest outside Tesco Express, Thetford

Tesco Express protest in Thetford (Picture: Becky Murphy)

Tesco Express protest in Thetford (Picture: Becky Murphy) - Credit: Archant

Animal rights campaigners held a protest outside Tesco Express in Thetford as part of a national demonstration.

Organised by animal welfare organisation Viva! Campaigns, more than 100 demonstrations took place across the UK on Saturday.

They were held in relation to an investigation carried out by Viva! into the Hogwood Pig Farm, Warwickshire, which supplies pork to Tesco.

Juliet Gellatley, Viva! founder and director, said she found scenes of overcrowding, filthy conditions and sick and dying pigs.

The demonstrators hoped to persuade Tesco to not use the farm and asked customers to sign a petition, to support the closure of the farm, which will be handed to the government.

In Thetford, Hazel Evans and Melissa Caals said they had a positive reaction from customers using the Norwich Road store.

They said they also hoped to show people the benefits of a vegan lifestyle.

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Mrs Evans said: 'It is to make people aware of factory farms and that they are cruel and the animals all end up in horrific slaughterhouses.

'If people are upset by what they are seeing and if they want to take a stand against it the only other way is to eliminate all animal products from their diet.'

She added: 'It is just to get people thinking about of how we treat animals in our society.'

A spokesman for Tesco said they take animal welfare extremely seriously and they expect all producers to meet recognised farm assurance standards.

They added: 'Any claims that our standards have not been met are always fully investigated.'

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