A UK dairy boss has attacked vegan activists and accused them of making claims which have “no basis in fact”.
Paul Vernon, the new chairman of Dairy UK, hit out as new figures show dairy is more popular with consumers than ever.
He said: “This outstanding and enduring support comes at a time when consumers are being offered all kinds of plant-based alternative drinks.
“They are also being fed a constant anti-dairy narrative in support of veganism, which very often has little or no basis in fact.”
New figures from Dairy UK, the trade association for the British dairy industry, show 87 per cent of consumers are drinking cow’s milk, 94 per cent of adults buy cheese and 78 per cent enjoy yogurt or fromage frais.
Mr Vernon’s comments represent the latest salvo aimed at the vegan lobby by British farming.
Earlier this year, Dairy UK announced £1.2 million for a marketing campaign to counter attacks from the vegan lobby.
Mr Vernon’s views were supported by Dr Judith Bryans, chief executive of Dairy UK, who added: “Milk, cheese and yogurt are naturally rich in nutrients.
“They contain a wide variety of vitamins and minerals as well as good quality protein.
“They have an important role in the British diet.
“Given the wide variety of dairy foods available there is truly a product for every dietary need and preference.
“It is crucial that government shares the public’s loyalty to dairy, and takes into account the benefits of consuming dairy products when developing nutritional strategies.”
Farmers and dairy farmers have grown increasingly frustrated by the damaging impact of the animal rights and vegan lobbies.