A protest by vegan activists against a butcher they said was selling horse meat has attracted a counter-protest by hundreds of supporters of the shop owner, with meat being thrown at the complainants.
About 20 members from the Direct Action Everywhere animals rights group protested outside celebrity chef Vince Garreffa’s Mondo Butchers in Inglewood, Perth on Saturday morning.
But the vegans were outnumbered by a chorus of 300 meat lovers who instead blasted Italian music and paraded cuts of meat in the street.
Despite the sweltering 40 degree temperature, the meat eaters fought back passionately, with one man even hurling a piece of steak towards the activists.
A witness told Daily Mail Australia a member of the pro-meat group had waved a steak in front of a vegan’s face before throwing it in their direction.
‘(The vegans) were definitely frustrated. I think they were taken aback by the number of supporters,’ they said.
‘They were just fuming. Everyone was there to support them.’
As many as 20 members from the Direct Action Everywhere animals rights group protested outside celebrity chef Vince Garreffa’s Mondo Butchers in Inglewood, Perth on Saturday morning (pictured)
One of the butcher’s supporters threw a piece of meat towards the vegans during the protest (pictured)
Many were seen standing opposite the butcher, calling for the store to stop selling horse meat
Around 20 vegans protested outside Mondo Butchers with many carrying signs reading: ‘Try the vegan option, think of the future’ (pictured)
‘Stop the killing! Stop the violence! Fight with us!’ one of the vegan protesters shouted over a megaphone.
The activists, waving placards and using a megaphone as they assembled on the footpath opposite the butcher shop, chanted ‘It’s not food, it’s murder’.
‘All the butchers started parading meat, carrying four or five lambs over their shoulders,’ the witness said.
Butcher supporters highlighted the hypocrisy of some protesters wearing leather bags and shoes.
As many as 300 people turned up on Saturday morning in support of Mondo Butchers
The protesters were drowned out by the supporters during the 40 degree day
Vince Garreffa, owner of the store said he was overwhelmed with how many supporters turned up
The butcher shop’s owner and well known chef Vince Garreffa told Daily Mail Australia he was overwhelmed with the amount of support he received.
‘I couldn’t believe they would waste so much time attacking individual farmers and butcher shops,’ he said.
‘I couldn’t believe the amount of farmers, butchers, and members of local council who came to support us. It was so humbling that I got emotional a few times.’
Police had to restrain some of the vegans during the protest on Saturday (pictured)
The witness also said many of the protesters were wearing leather bags and shoes (pictured)
Despite 40 degree temperatures, the vegans were determined to have their message heard
Police were guarding the protest with some activists having to be pulled away
Over the course of the protest police had to restrain some of the activists, pulling some away from the store.
Mr Garreffa prepared for the vegan attack admitting he bought three speakers and hired a DJ to drown them out.
‘Every time they tried to do their horrible speeches we drowned them out for an hour, it was the most successful fight,’ he said.
The animals rights activists were offered water by the meat supporters but refused to take any
Many of the supporters flaunted the meat as they ate free sausages that were handed out (pictured)
The group stood firmly on the opposite side of the butchers, using megaphones to get their message across
Several police officers were on duty during the protest, restraining some vegans
The butcher said he had offered the protesters water due to the scorching temperature that reached 40C but they refused to take it.
‘They’re an arrogant bunch. They don’t represent all vegans. These people have no respect they called us some vile names.
‘They’re very rude and very spoilt.’
Vegan activists have been persistent in their mission to end the slaughtering of animals as this year several groups stormed farms across the country in attempts to ‘rescue’ animals.
But Mr Garreffa says it won’t be happening anytime soon.
‘All the protesters worry about saving lots of animals but don’t think for one minute you are on the higher ground, because there are animals that we grow for food and that’s the way the world works,’ he said.
Vince Garreffa offered free sausages on a stick and meat sandwiches for a special price during protest
‘It’s not food, it’s murder’ many of the vegans chanted throughout Saturday morning