Animal rights activists are urging Food Lion to stop using live animals in its advertisements.
Supermarket News reported that People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals last week called off a protest at a California commercial shoot when the group learned that the iconic lion wouldn’t be on the Food Lion set. PETA instead issued a statement condemning the use of real lions, which Food Lion has done for more than two years.
“PETA is calling on the company to make a pledge for the future: no wild animals in ads, ever,” Delcianna Winders, deputy general counsel of the PETA Foundation, said in a statement. “Food Lion can and should create eye-catching ads without resorting to the use of deprived, captive wild animals.”
Food Lion said the animal was never scheduled to be on set the day of the shoot, Supermarket News reported, and that it requires its filming partners to adhere to a number of measures ensuring the safety and well-being of the lion, including using animal-actor trainers and third-party oversight of the filming process every time the animal is on set.
The supermarket chain’s television commercials feature a large talking lion offering his “two cents” about grocery shopping.
Food Lion, the No. 3 supermarket in the Charlotte region by market share, operates 106 locations in the Charlotte area, more than any of its local competitors.