PROTESTERS were moved along by police after gathering outside a Wickford supermarket to oppose the sale of kangaroo meat.

Officers were called to Iceland, in High Street, at about 12.30pm today after reports of a group gathered outside.

An Essex Police spokesman said: “The protest is understood to have been in relation to products sold at the store.

“At 1pm a brief road closure was put in place on the High Street as the group moved along to protest outside neighbouring businesses.”

The road reopened 15 minutes later, but the protesters initially remained in the town centre.

At 1.20pm they were given a direction to leave the area by police, due to the disturbance they were causing to neighbouring shops.

It is understood the protests related to Iceland’s sale of exotic animal meat, including kangaroo, ostrich and buffalo.

Previous protests have been held on animal rights grounds, due to claims many kangaroos suffer painful deaths and babies are torn from dying mothers by hunters.

Iceland joint managing director Nick Canning said: “These protests are operating under a total misconception.

“No female kangaroos end up in boxes at Iceland for the simple reason that our suppliers only harvest male kangaroos, precisely to avoid the concerns highlighted around female kangaroos.

“Commercial harvesting of kangaroos is authorised by the Australian state and federal governments to prevent overpopulation causing environmental and economic damage.”