This Morning comes under fire as squirrel is cooked in segment: ‘It’s inhumane!’


his Morning viewers were left ‘disgusted’ after a dish containing squirrel was eaten live on the show on Thursday.

A grey squirrel was cooked during the episode by chef Phil Vickery, and was described as “chewy” by Phillip Schofield who tasted the dish, while co-host Holly Willoughby, refused.

The meal was presented as it was discussed that the wildlife campaign group the Exmoor Squirrel Project has claimed grey squirrels can be served in dishes such as kebabs, pies and stews.

Viewers branded the segment “inhumane” as they shared their shocked reactions on Twitter.

One person wrote: “Just seen on This Morning re Exmoor Squirrel Project encouraging people to eat Grey Squirrel the world has gone mad.”

A second said: “I think it’s disgusting that this morning is laughing and joking about eating grey squirrel live in tv surely they are wildlife and should not be killed for meat? Very cruel and inhumane.”

A third commented: “Just no! This may encourage people to go and kill squirrels. Not a responsible move by @thismorning I’m very disappointed”.

A fourth added: “#ThisMorning cheerfully discussing culling squirrels and murdering all cats. Nice. Humans are evil.”

The Exmoor Squirrel Project campaign group has shared its wish to eradicate grey squirrels as the animals have driven red squirrels on Exmoor near extinction.

Organisers of the group have had talks with a couple of restaurants about serving grey squirrels up as dishes, and have urged landowners and homeowners to monitor the animals and set traps in their gardens to catch them.

Red squirrels are thought to be dying off as grey squirrels have passed the deadly squirrelpox virus onto them.

Following This Morning’s criticism on the squirrel segment, Countryside Alliance spokesman James Aris said: “The vast bulk of the British public enjoy eating meat and we should all be thinking about ways we can eat it more sustainably.

“Grey squirrels threaten the very existence of our native red squirrel population, and their numbers need to be controlled.

“Using the meat of culled grey squirrels is a fantastic way to cut down on food waste, while benefiting from a lean, low carbon meal.

“This Morning should be applauded for their demonstration and for raising this important issue.”

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