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Caffe Nero says badger cull milk boycott is about staff safety

The badger cull is strongly supported by farmers but controversial among animal rights activists. Credit: Ben Birchall/PA Wire/Press Association Images

Caffe Nero has defended its boycott of milk from badger cull areas as necessary to protect its staff.

In a statement the coffee chain insisted it was not bowing to intimidation, but that it had to act when staff well-being was threatened.

With just 2% of our annual milk supply impacted, we made what we feel was the right choice ... We are not intimidated by protestors in spite of their ongoing and upsetting efforts to threaten our business. At the end of the day, we know that the authorities will support us if needed. However, we made a decision to limit any risk to our people as quickly as possible.

– Caffe Nero statement

Animal rights activists told Caffe Nero they would protest if the coffee chain continued to use milk from badger cull areas.

Dairy farmers in Gloucestershire and Somerset have criticised activists for their tactics, and talked of boycotting the coffee chain for its decision. Caffe Nero says it has discussed its reasons with the National Farmers' Union.

West Country MP criticises Caffe Nero's badger cull stance

The badger cull is strongly supported by farmers but controversial among animal rights activists. Credit: Ben Birchall/PA Wire/Press Association Images

A West Country MP is criticising Caffe Nero's decision to stop using milk that has come from farms in badger cull zones in Gloucestershire and Somerset.

With two big milk producers in his constituency Ian Liddell-Grainger says the coffee shop's decision will put jobs at risk.

Caffe Nero took the move after anti-cull protesters threatened to boycott the cafe unless the company refused to the use the milk.

I have a lot of farmers in my constituency. I have superb dairymen, superb cattle, wonderful milk. Don't boycott British milk to put British jobs at risk because you've got some petty vendetta. Get a job, grow up and stop annoying the police."

– Ian Liddell-Grainger, Conservative MP for Bridgwater & West Somerset

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Seeing stars over Dartmoor

A West Country photographer has captured these extraordinary images of the Milky Way over Dartmoor.

Jon Scott, from Plymouth, says the conditions were near-perfect, with no moon and clear skies. But Jon suffered for his art - he had to hike for five hours to reach the best viewing point, and was up to his knees in marsh for much of the night!

By morning heavy fog was covering the entire moor and visibility was down to about 50 metres. I had to navigate out using an old-fashioned compass and OS map, certainly not for the faint hearted!

– Jon Scott, photographer
Milky Way over Dartmoor Credit: @jonscottfilm
Dartmoor sky at night Credit: @jonscottfilm
Perseoid meteor shower Credit: @jonscottfilm
Milky way over Dartmoor Credit: @jonscottfilm

Watch: Incredible time lapse footage of Dartmoor's changing beauty

Jon Scott spent months sleeping out on Dartmoor to capture these shots. Credit: @jonscottfilm

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Dartmoor's changing beauty has been captured in more than 30,000 photographs by Jon Scott, who has spent months sleeping out there alone.

He then painstakingly puts the pictures together and sets them to music, creating two mesmerising time lapses of how the landscape changes throughout the seasons.

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Dartmoor became a National Park in 1951. Credit: @jonscottfilm
Mr Scott took tens of thousands of photographs on Dartmoor at all times of day. Credit: @jonscottfilm

Bluebell season underway in Cornwall

The flowers in Enys Gardens Credit: ITV News

Bluebell season is underway at Enys Gardens in Cornwall. The annual bluebell festival will be open till Sunday at the site near Penryn.

Gardner Mark Jones says that despite the dry weather the bluebells are still not to be missed:

It's not been the best year for bluebells. I think it's been pretty much quite dry. But still they're pretty amazing even not at their full potential. I think they will catch up for this weekend going into next week.

– Mark Jones, Assistant Gardener

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Figures show the South West is the worst for farming accidents

Figures show the South West is the worst for farming accidents Credit: ITV News

The South West has the highest number of farmers claiming for accidents than anywhere else in the UK, it has been revealed.

The figures point to a high proportion of injury and death that take place on Devon and Cornwall's farms with over 600 claims being made in 2013. As a result the National Farmers Union have launched a campaign to raise awareness of how dangerous agriculture work can be.

Now Somerset band The Wurzels have released a new version of their classic 'Combine Harvester' song to highlight the issue.

The agricultural industry is the UK's most dangerous occupation - figures from the Health and Safety Executive show 27 people died in farm accidents in the year to April 2014.

We hope to raise the awareness of farm safety and we are aiming it at the younger farmers in particular, sharing it on social media, so hopefully they will be able to share it with their friends and their colleagues to raise the profile of farm safety and how dangerous farming can be.

– Rob Jones Trustee, Farm Safety Foundation

Chair of Environment Committee says there are partial solutions to the milk crisis

A committee of MPs says the government could do more to protect dairy farmers from fluctuations in milk prices.

The region's farmers have staged blockades in protest at low milk prices, which they say will drive them out of business.

Retailers say they've had to lower the price of milk because of an over-supply.

The Chair of the Committee Anne McIntosh says there are partial solutions.

  1. West Country (E)

MPs: Dairy farmers need greater protection against falling milk prices

It's been a volatile year for dairy farmers Credit: Reuters

Dairy farmers need greater protection in the face of sharp falls in the price of milk, MPs have said.

Since last summer the dairy industry has been hit by significant falls in milk prices in the face of rising supply and falling demand, particularly from China and as a result of the Russian trade ban.

The sharp reversal in fortunes, coming after prices hit their highest level for several years, has been driving dairy farmers out of business every week, with the total number in the UK falling to below 10,000 for the first time.

Filmmakers capture a year in the life of Dartmoor

The film captures the beauty of autumn on Dartmoor Credit: Alex Nail & Guy Richardson

The scenery of Dartmoor is some of the most inspiring in the world. Two photographers were so inspired that they created a time-lapse film of the National Park showing its changing face throughout the seasons.

It took a painstaking attention to detail and extraordinary dedication. The results were so good that the eight minute finished film has been bought by the Dartmoor National Park Authority itself.

Our reporter Jacquie Bird has been to meet Alec Nail and Guy Richardson, the men behind the cameras, and find out a little about how they did it.

You can watch her report here:

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