Crocodiles Cut Open and Skinned in Vietnam for Handbags
Eyewitness footage reveals that reptiles are kept in narrow concrete enclosures and then violently killed. Some of these farms supply Louis Vuitton and other luxury brands.
Vietnam exports around 30,000 crocodile skins every year. This video shows what life – and death – is like for many of these victims of the fashion industry, whose skin is used to make “luxury” leather bags, belts, and watchstraps sold around the world.
Two of the farms investigated supply crocodile skins to Louis Vuitton’s parent company, LVMH, and “some of the biggest brands”, according to a farm owner.
PETA and our international affiliates have already exposed suffering on reptile farms in the US and Africa. It’s clear – wherever they come from, exotic animal skins are the product of intense cruelty.
Workers electroshocked crocodiles and then attempted to kill them by cutting into their necks and ramming metal rods down their spines. The animals shake vigorously as this happens. One crocodile can be seen lifting his leg after he was cut open. Then workers leave him to bleed out.
This killing method has long been shown to be inhumane, and experts have found that crocodilians remain conscious for over an hour after their spinal cord has been severed and their blood vessels cut.
A reptile expert who watched footage of the crocodiles being slaughtered said that “the neck incisions would have been very painful and inhumane”, and “There is no probability that these animals ‘died instantly’”.
Workers took the crocodiles into an adjacent room and cut off their skin – a process that takes 15 to 20 minutes per animal. Footage shows that one crocodile continued to move after being skinned.
The investigator visited a farm that holds tens of thousands of crocodiles and slaughters 1,500 of them every three months.
At this farm, which supplies skins to Louis Vuitton, about 5,000 crocodiles were kept in small, concrete enclosures – some narrower than the length of their bodies.
The investigator was told that they are kept in these conditions, which a reptile expert called “overly-restrictive, understimulating, and inhumane” for large crocodiles, for 15 months before finally being slaughtered.
At this farm and another one that supplies skins to LVMH, crocodiles were packed into concrete pits.
When several animals are housed together, it’s likely that aggression and injuries will result, and these commonly lead to infection and disease. One crocodile was missing a tail.
After the crocodiles were slaughtered, workers cut and pulled off their skin – all just to make “luxury” crocodile-skin bags, wallets, and other items to be sold by Louis Vuitton and other brands.
One Louis Vuitton crocodile-skin handbag can sell for £25,000.
Footage from reptile farms on three continents tells the same miserable story: grim, close confinement, and a violent death.
Please refuse to support this cruelty – don’t ever buy or wear products made from exotic skins.
Do more: urge luxury fashion company LVMH to shed exotic skins from Louis Vuitton and all its other brands.