Farmers in Iowa have blasted a pro-vegan billboard, calling it 'misleading and disingenuous'.
The board, which has been planned by animal rights charity PETA, calls on people to support the US soy industry by consuming the product in place of meat. It says: "America's Soybean Farmers Want You … to Go Vegan! Tofu: Born in China but Raised in the U.S.A."
According to PETA: "The threat of a trade war with China is looming - and soy farmers warn that tariffs on soy exports to China, which currently receives one-quarter of all the soybeans grown in the United States, would cause 'serious damage' to their industry. That's why PETA plans to run a billboard in Des Moines- the capital of Iowa, which is the second-highest soy-producing state in the country and the home of the president of the American Soybean Association."
But the Iowa Soybean Association blasted the board, branding it 'misleading and disingenuous'. Spokesperson Aaron Putze said the organization is not encouraging consumers to give up meat.
He added: "The billboard is misleading and disingenuous. [Its efforts] to capitalize on a painful trade dispute to further its anti-meat agenda is in poor taste. It's a new low for PETA. PETA doesn't speak for Iowa or U.S. soybean growers."
PETA President, Ingrid Newkirk, said: "In the face of a potential trade war, it's our civic duty to choose healthy, tasty and downright patriotic dishes such as veggie burgers, soy-based hot dogs, sausages and 'chicken' wings."