The group Cube of Truth held a silent multi-media protest at the Langley Ribfest on Friday evening. (Heather Colpitts/Langley Advance Times)

VIDEO: Langley Ribfest met with protesters

Groups that oppose the event for various reasons plan to be on site each of the three days.

Environmental and animal welfare groups plan to protest Langley Ribfest each of its three days.

The Rotary Clubs of Langley host the charity fundraiser Friday through Sunday at McLeod Athletic Park. The event includes public tastings and competition between barbecue groups. The 2018 Ribfest raised $60,000 for Rotary causes. Rotary and other service clubs in other communities have also hosted Ribfest fundraisers. A few of those events have attracted protesters.

“Langley Rotary, along with chapters throughout the province will be going ahead with planned event Ribfest this weekend, despite hearing from concerned citizens that the event celebrates the second-largest contributor to climate emergency, animal agriculture; promotes the consumption of a Group 1 carcinogen; and is being supplied by Johnston’s Meats, who have been linked to Excelsior Hog Farm, currently under investigation by the BCSPCA for animal abuse and mistreatment,” said Natalia Sotlar, with Earthlings Against Ribfest.

The protesters say the event has several concerning aspects. Langley Township declared a climate change emergency recently yet is one of the sponsors of the local Ribfest.

As well, there are concerns about animal welfare and the impact of animal agriculture on the environment, the protesters said.

“On June 20, a group of concerned citizens, along with the group Earthlings Against Ribfest, met with the Langley Rotary chapter to discuss the above concerns,” Sotlar added. “Subsequent to an email sent to Rotary and Ribfest sponsors, the meeting outlined the concerns in this release. Langley Rotary thanked the attendees, and stated they would take the matter under advisement.”

The event Aug. 16 to 18 flies in the face of Rotary’s works on a global and local scale, the protesters claim. Rotary efforts include fighting disease, providing clean water, promoting peace, sanitation and hygiene, and assisting disaster response.

The protester’s statement goes on to say that the World Health Organization has classified red meat as a Group 2A carcinogen and processed meat is classed as a Group 1A carcinogen.

Pauline Buck, president of the Aldergrove Rotary Club, said a small group of people protested at last year’s event for a brief period of time.

“Last year the protesters were peaceful and respectful,” she said.

Organizers are hoping this year’s protesters follow suit. She added that they will have to agree to disagree and doesn’t think the protests will keep people from attending.

“We understand that not everybody is in favour of everything,” Buck said. “…That’s one of the wonders of living in a democracy.”

Johnston Meats website says it has clear expectations for its suppliers: “At Johnston’s, we have a clear standard of care for all animals that are raised to be delivered to Johnston’s. The B.C. producers are pleased to meet our high standards of animal care and we are happy to work with the producers to assist them in achieving these standards.”

Protesters with Cube of Truth had announced a silent protest Friday, Aug. 16 from 6 to 9 p.m.

The Saturday protest is by Langley Pig Save and is planned for Saturday from 4 to 7 p.m.

Sunday’s event is noon to 2 p.m. and hosted by Direct Action Everywhere.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Whitehorse native Elias joins Michigan-Dearborn Wolverines

Johnny Elias played for the Fernie Ghostriders this past season

EDITORIAL: Editor bids farewell

Editor Paige Mueller will be leaving The Free Press team at the end of July

Aislinn Dressler competes in 2020 Youth Innovation Showcase

Dressler was a finalist at the showcase, exhibiting her energy efficient fridge design

Stories decorate city pathways for new reading initiative

The Fernie Women’s Resource Centre began the initiative in support of the local early years community

QUIZ: How much do you know about British Columbia?

On this B.C. Day long weekend, put your knowledge of our province to the test

B.C. records 146 new COVID-19 cases through long weekend

More that 28 people tested positive for the virus each day since Friday

Canucks tame Minnesota Wild 4-3 to even NHL qualifying series

J.T. Miller leads Vancouver with goal and an assist

COVID-19 vaccine efforts provide hope but no silver bullet to stop pandemic: Tam

There are more than two dozen vaccines for COVID-19 in clinical trials around the world

Interior Health reports nine new cases of COVID-19, 149 linked to Kelowna

Nine new cases were reported in the Interior Health region over the long weekend’s four reporting periods

Two people die in propane heated outdoor shower near Princeton

Couple was attending a long weekend gathering

Study shines light on what makes LGBTQ+ youth feel safe in a community

The study goes beyond looking at school or family supports

Alberta to require masks at schools this fall, but still no mandate in B.C.

B.C. students are also set to return to classrooms in September

Feds fund $2M for habitat conservation in the Kootenays

Kootenay Connect program to protect habitat for species at risk in four areas in the region

B.C. to allow customers to buy cannabis online for in-store pickup at private shops

Age verification will still be required inside the store

Most Read