‘It’s not food, it’s violence’: Vegan protesters clash with grocery store customers

Cleanup in the refrigerated aisle.

Shoppers at a grocery store in Auckland, New Zealand, looking to pick up some meat were instead greeted by a line of vegan protesters. Not surprisingly, not every customer reacted positively to the event.

The incident occurred on Sunday at the Countdown grocery store in St Lukes, the New Zealand Herald reports. About 20 activists participated in the event, where they handed out flyers to shoppers who passed by the refrigerated meat aisle.

While it appears that most customers reacted respectfully to the protest, several shoppers were angered. Footage filmed by the protesters shows at least two different exchanges between the vegans and unhappy customers.

“Take your camera off me,” complained one customer. “I’m doing my f—ing shopping. I’m doing my shopping, unless you’re going to pay for my shopping, you can back off!”

Another customer appeared to get upset about the presence of the protesters, exclaiming, “Get out of my face. I’m disgusted you guys are even here in my supermarket walking by my food.”

The footage of the incident appears to have been filmed and edited by the protest group.

At one point, the group is apparently approached by a store employee, who seemingly asks if they had permission to hold their event.

“Were we given permission to do this? No, we were not,” responds one of the group members. “We’re here in peaceful protest for the victims that lay behind these brave people here.”

As the group left the store, they chanted, “It’s not food, it’s violence,” among other vegan slogans.

In a statement obtained by the New Zealand Herald, a spokesperson for Countdown said, “As a supermarket, we work hard to provide our vegan and vegetarian customers with good quality and affordable options in our stores, and we are also deeply committed to good animal welfare practices throughout our supply chain.

“We reserve the right to ask anyone undertaking protest action to leave our stores,” the statement continues, “however on this occasion, this request was ignored several times. The police were called to support our team and the protestors left shortly afterward.”

Fox News reached out to Countdown and a member of the protest group for comment, but neither immediately responded.

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