Heather Mills has launched a UK ‘vegan northern powerhouse’ which will offer manufacturing, storage and business space exclusively to vegan entrepreneurs and plant-based businesses.

Climate activists have welcomed the launch in the Northumberland countryside of a “vegan Silicon Valley”, which is aimed at helping to fight climate change.

The 55-acre site, the brainchild of the entrepreneur Heather Mills, will offer manufacturing, storage and business space exclusively to vegan entrepreneurs and plant-based businesses.

The valley, 10 miles from Newcastle, has been nicknamed Plant-based Valley. There are hopes for it to be at the centre of a food revolution as the world increasingly turns toward plant-based diets and more people change their eating habits in an attempt to halt the climate emergency.

Mills said it would make the region a “world centre for the creation of planet-rescuing ideas” and the “northern powerhouse for the brightest vegan minds”.

She has previously given her backing to several vegan startups. In 2009 she launched a food range, VBites, which distributes products around the world.

“This is not merely a business and investment enterprise, this is an enterprise on which the future of the planet is going to depend,” said Mills at the launch of the project at her VBites factory at Seaton Delaval, near Newcastle.

“I have been warning about this for more than 20 years and it is now an accepted scientific fact, endorsed by everyone from the United Nations to David Attenborough to Greta Thunberg’s teens-based movement, that the cattle culture diet is having a disastrous effect on the climate and it threatens our very existence.”

Alex Lockwood, a spokesperson for Animal Rebellion – a partner organisation of Extinction Rebellion – said the launch showed north-east England would take a leading role in the UK’s transition to a plant-based food system.

“Newcastle and the north-east has a strong activist community and is rich in vegan cafes and eateries, but for animal justice activists this is fantastic news, because it is creating jobs that people can be proud of and shifting farm and slaughterhouse workers away from animal agriculture and into more secure and sustainable jobs,” Lockwood said.

“The north-east was the seat of the industrial revolution. And here it is again, leading the way in the UK’s plant-based revolution.”

Original source: https://www.theguardian.com

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