Portsmouth Tesco stores targeted with graffiti messages left by Greenpeace activists over deforestation policies

ACTIVISTS from Greenpeace have used stencil graffiti messages to target Tesco stores across Portsmouth as part of a nationwide campaign to highlight deforestation caused by the supermarket chain.

Sunday, 27th June 2021, 4:55 am

On Friday morning, stencilled messages saying ‘Tesco meat = deforestation’ appeared outside the supermarket’s branches in Goldsmith Avenue and Albert Road.

The messages were part of an escalating nationwide protest before the supermarket chain’s annual general meeting.

The meeting’s delegates arrived at the supermarket’s Welwyn Garden City headquarters to be greeted by activists holding a 10 metre wide sign denouncing the company’s ‘FOREST CRIME’.

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Over the last two months, Greenpeace volunteers have left stencilled messages outside more than 270 stores, while 250,000 people have signed a petition calling on Tesco to stop selling brands that contribute to deforestation.

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Greenpeace supporter and Portsmouth resident James Sebley said: ‘When you buy a chicken from Tesco, it won’t mention the forest crime that took place to produce it. Tesco’s chicken supplier is owned by a company notorious for destroying the Amazon rainforest. And Tesco’s chicken is reared on soya that’s driving deforestation and fires across Brazil.

‘Indigenous Peoples are facing an assault on their rights as forests like the Amazon are being slashed and deliberately burned for industrial meat production. It’s killing wildlife, the risk of future pandemics is increasing and it’s playing havoc with the climate.

A message stencilled in yellow colour chalk, reading ‘Tesco meat = deforestation’ appears outside the supermarket’s branch in Crosspool as part of a nationwide protest at 270 stores, including two in Portsmouth. Picture: Greenpeace

‘Shoppers have sent personal pleas for Tesco to drop forest destroyers from its supply chain – many threatening a boycott if it doesn’t. Tesco can’t afford to ignore them and we won’t stop campaigning until Tesco stops greenwashing and takes action.’

More than 10,000 people have written to Tesco threatening or declaring a boycott unless more is done to tackle the problem of deforestation, according to Greenpeace.

Tesco's suppliers must meet environmental and zero deforestation standards, and that the company have set an additional target for the soy to be sourced from verified deforestation-free areas by 2025, according to the company’s website.

In November, Portsmouth activists targeted a Tesco store in Albert Road by pasting across its front window a poster that derided the company’s deforestation policies.

A Tesco store in Portsmouth targeted by Greenpeace activists to highlight the issue of deforestation. Picture: Greenpeace

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