PETA US Urges Prada to Drop Exotic Skins Ahead of Annual Meeting, Citing WIldlife Trade Pandemic Risk
For Immediate Release:
26 May 2020
Sascha Camilli +44 (0) 20 7923 6244; [email protected]
PETA US URGES PRADA TO DROP EXOTIC SKINS AHEAD OF ANNUAL MEETING, CITING WILDLIFE TRADE PANDEMIC RISK
As a Shareholder, Group Asks Fashion House to Stop Supporting Dirty Wild-Animal Trade
London – As the coronavirus pandemic continues to claim lives, PETA US has written to Prada ahead of its annual meeting, held virtually on Tuesday, to urge the company to stop selling accessories made with the skins of wild animals. Conservation experts warn that the exotic-skins industry fuels the risk of further epidemics – because as at wet markets, the wild animals it uses are confined and slaughtered in unsanitary conditions, potentially giving rise to viruses.
“PETA and our affiliates have documented not only cruelty to animals but also grossly unsanitary conditions on farms in the US, Africa and Asia,” writes PETA US Senior Vice President Dan Mathews. “Concerned consumers around the world are watching the way brands respond to this new era, and we would love to promote Prada as the latest company to have chosen to leave wildlife in peace.”
PETA points out that SARS and the novel coronavirus first infected humans who came into close contact with captive wildlife at live-animal markets where animals are confined to cramped wire cages, blood and other bodily fluids are exchanged, and diseases can easily spread. The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention warns that approximately 75% of recently emerged infectious diseases affecting humans originated in other animals.
PETA – whose motto reads, in part, that “animals are not ours to wear” – has released a video exposé of the world’s largest ostrich-slaughter companies, which supply Prada and other brands. The footage reveals that young birds are kept on barren dirt feedlots before they’re crowded into lorries, transported to abattoirs, and electrically shocked before their throats are slit.
The group’s exposés of the reptile-skins industry uncovered further cruelty. At a crocodile farm in Vietnam, tens of thousands of crocodiles were kept in small, filthy concrete enclosures, some narrower than the length of their bodies. Alligators on a farm in Texas were kept in fetid water in dank, dark sheds before their necks were hacked open and metal rods were shoved into their heads in an attempt to scramble their brains, often while they were fully conscious.
Following these findings, brands such as Chanel, Jil Sander, Victoria Beckham, Paul Smith, and Mulberry have already made the compassionate decision to ban exotic skins from all future collections.