Activists Speak Up for Animals at Prada and Hermès Annual Meetings
Behind every ostrich-, crocodile-, and alligator-skin bag is a short, miserable life of deprivation and a violent death. That’s the message PETA US took to Hermès in Paris this morning, as a representative called on the “luxury” brand to stop using exotic animal skins. As a shareholder in both Hermès and Prada, the group was also able to send a representative to Prada’s annual meeting in Milan on 31 May.
A disturbing PETA US investigation in 2015 exposed what happens inside the largest ostrich-slaughter companies in the world, including those that supply Prada, Hermès, and other major brands. It revealed that young birds spend their lives confined to barren dirt lots before being packed into crowded lorries and transported to the abattoir when they’re just 1 year old. They’re violently herded onto the killing floor, where they undergo an electric shock before their throats are slit. Moments later, their feathers are torn from their still-warm bodies and they’re skinned and dismembered, often within view of other distressed birds.
Crocodiles and alligators used for “luxury” products suffer a similarly cruel fate. A PETA exposé reveals that at a crocodile farm in Vietnam, tens of thousands of crocodiles are kept in small, filthy concrete enclosures, some narrower than the length of their bodies. Meanwhile, alligators at a farm in Texas are kept in fetid water in dank, dark sheds before their necks are hacked open and metal rods shoved into their heads in a gruesome attempt to scramble their brains, often while they’re still conscious.
When PETA US’ representative confronted Prada chairperson Carlo Mazzi with a description of this horrific cruelty, he defended his company’s practices by saying that “morality is subjective”. Despite what Prada and Hermès might say, there’s absolutely nothing subjective about the fact that tormenting and killing animals in the name of fashion is cruel and inhumane.
What You Can Do
Speak out for animals by sending a message to Prada and Hermès asking them to stop using exotic skins now.