TV CHEF Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall has sparked anger by suggesting that eating puppies is no different to raising pigs for their meat.
Fearnley-Whittingstall said that society had decided which animals it was acceptable to eat and unfairly decided that some should be kept only as pets.
The River Cottage star’s comments, made in an interview with the Radio Times, were blasted by animal charities.
In the interview, Fearnley-Whittingstall said: “In principle, but not in practice, I have no objection to a high-welfare organic puppy farm. You can’t object unless you also object tothe farming of pigs.
“It’s an artificial construct of our society, a cultural decision, to make pets out of dogs and meat out of pigs. Both animals could be used the other way around – although pigs probably do make better meat than dogs and dogs better pets than pigs.”
However he conceded that he’d only sample a Korean-style doggie dinner if “I were on the last point of starvation”.
A spokesman for the Dogs Trust hit out at the comments.
He said: “We believe that the concept of breeding dogs for food in any conditions, high-welfare or not, is wholly unacceptable.
“Dogs are companion animals and as man’s best friend they provide immeasurable love, comfort and support to owners all over the world.”
Fearnley-Whittingstall is currently following a vegetarian diet in preparation for his new TV series and book.