The butcher trade should be 'outlawed', according to the founder of a vegan group.
Penny Franiel, founder and chairwoman of Norwich Vegans which has 2,500 Facebook followers, made the comments to the Eastern Daily Press.
Franiel, who also runs a sanctuary with 68 animals, did say that there are some countries where eating animals is essential for survival - but this is not the case in the UK.
'Outlaw the trade'
"The butcher trade should be outlawed," Franiel, who has been vegan since her teens, said. "I ask people 'do you understand animals experience fear?' People don't believe it and say 'once they're dead, they're dead'.
"But when they are in those trucks crammed in, going to the abattoir, they can smell death, they are queuing up, they can hear it, they fear it, it's unbearable.
"I am against the people who slaughter animals for a living, I understand they have to do a job, but it's a certain type of person who can do that."
Butchers selling plant-based products
One butcher is starting to offer plant-based products, in a bid to appeal to more customers, with Thurston Butchers in Suffolk launching chicken and bacon alternatives from startup This.
"We're pretty sure we're the first butchers in the country to stock plant-based chicken and bacon meat-free alternatives," said the team at Thurston Butchers. "We understand that people are looking into their meat intake which we fully support; we are advocates of people eating only better quality meat as often as they can afford, so we feel offering this alternative works alongside our ethos.
"We would rather you use your village butcher once a month than use a supermarket every day. With us, you get something that is ethically produced to high-welfare standards and local (meaning fewer food miles) and the product will be much better for it. Not only that, but you will be supporting a local butcher within the local economy."