Redruth farmer hits out at anonymous threat to blacklist his products
A Redruth beef farmer has hit out at an anonymous group that threatened to blacklist his products if he failed to declare his views on the controversial badger cull.
Ashley Wood, who is chairman of Lanner Parish Council and runs Penhalveor Farm, said the email warned him that if he failed to respond it would assume he was supporting the cull.
The email then stated that it would send the farmer’s name to retailers and other consumers asking them to boycott his products.
The Government is currently undertaking two pilot badger culls in Somerset and Gloucestershire.
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Mr Wood, who has been farming since the 1980s and has a small herd of organic beef, said he was outraged by the threat from people too cowardly to identify themselves.
He said: “The cull isn’t happening in this area. Legitimate boycotts are an effective tool and have been used effectively in Africa and other areas.
“But I don’t want anybody reading my mind and assuming my position whatever side of the fence I maybe on. It said we were dairy farmers, which we are not. I don’t see a necessity to say what my view is.”
He reported the email to the NFU who stepped in and tracked down the organisation that sent the email.
Mr Wood said the farmer’s union acted swiftly and served an injunction on the group preventing them from contacting him again.
Richard Angove, from the NFU’s Helston office, said he could not comment on the case because of data protection, but said it was aware of emails threatening to boycott farmers being sent in Cornwall.
He said: “We have seen a limited number of these emails. I think this is wrong because it assumes a person’s position.
“Emails can be tracked and traced, whether they are anonymous or not.”
Mr Wood also contacted the Soil Association and National Beef Association warning them of the practice.