Farmers for Action, the militant action group picketing distribution outlets of Tesco, have threatened to extend their campaign to hit major shareholders in the UK retail leader.

The group has issued an ultimatum demanding that Tesco CEO Terry Leahy meet with its representatives to discuss supplier prices. Farmers for Action head David Handley revealed that members of the group are mulling the launch of demonstrations against shareholders, saying: "Shareholders have a responsibility too. We are doing our homework and looking at who are major shareholders. We could be considering some of our wrath coming down on them too."

Farmers for Action gave ample evidence of its weight and determination when it spearheaded the fuel protests in Autumn 2001. It claims Tesco's supplier payment policies aim to put the squeeze on producers.

In response to the group's media activities, Tesco has stated that Leahy will not be meeting with the protestors but has suggested they meet with group agriculture director Colin Smith, effectively playing down the importance the group attributes to the issue.