In a bid to recruit new members, UK organic food and farming lobby The Soil Association is using the foot and mouth epidemic in attention grabbing advertisements.

The press advert, which is due to run in the Observer Food Monthly supplement, the Guardian and the Independent this weekend, claims that the public is footing the tax bill for a damaging and ultimately expensive policy of producing cheaper food.

Consumers will be faced with the image of a cow being slaughtered with a bolt gun, which appears with the tag line "There's no such thing as cheap food." The Soil Association is urging the public to donate money in a bid to avoid "the appalling price of a cheap food policy."