A French couple, Mr and Mrs Alboud, have been forced to sell their supermarket franchise in France after they posed with dead trophy animals on an African safari. As a consequence, they faced death threats online from animal rights activists who circulated Facebook pictures of them. They are pictured with a leopard, crocodile, a lion and a hippopotamus. The pictures appeared on a website which sells trophy hunting safaris in Tanzania and South Africa.
The pictures were found by a supporter of the Animalist Party which won 2.2% of the vote in the European elections. The mood is changing in France with butchers and abattoirs being attacked.
The images online led to calls for shoppers to boycott this couple’s supermarket, Super U. It is a cooperative store in L’Arbresle near Lyon, France.
As a consequence the shopping chain put pressure on the couple to quit. They said that the hunting pictures were “in total opposition with the values defended by the chain. We condemn them even if they are private activities”.
The mayor of Lyon said that the pictures were shocking and inadmissible. He said:
“It is criminal to hunt protected species.”
There is no doubt that the mood is changing in France in respect of animal rights which I would argue is linked to the wider topic of protecting the environment, climate change, plastic and air pollution and so on. Historically France paid little attention to animal rights. It’s a country which permit bull and cockfighting and where 1.1 million people hunt. But as stated the mood is changing. And about time too I would say.
Comment: Trophy hunting is almost universally regarded as objectionable in the 21st century. It is in opposition to common sense, decency and the humane and respectful treatment of wild animals with whom we share the planet. It is anti-conservation and anyone who says differently is lying.