Video: Cows Beaten, Branded, and Shocked for Leather Shoes and Bags

For Immediate Release:

16 November 2016


Olivia Jordan +44 (0) 20 7837 6327, ext. 229; [email protected]


PETA Exposes Systemic Cruelty at Suppliers to World’s Largest Leather Producer With Links to Adidas, Clarks, Skechers, and Others

London – A PETA video exposé, featuring investigative footage from the non-governmental organisation Repórter Brasil, of eight Brazilian cattle ranches supplying JBS S.A. – the world’s largest beef producer and leather processor – reveals that cows are branded on the face with no pain relief, and electroshocked before their throats are slit and they are skinned to produce the leather used to make shoes, belts, handbags, and other accessories for Adidas, Clarks, Skechers, and other brands. Brazilian Minister of Agriculture Col Eumar Roberto Novacki has been asked to investigate the cattle farms for allegedly violating the Brazilian Constitution, which forbids cruelty to animals.

“For every leather shoe, bag, or belt, gentle cows were beaten, branded, shocked, and skinned,” says PETA Managing Director Ingrid Newkirk. “PETA is calling on consumers to make kind choices concerning their clothing and other purchases and to leave animals’ skins out of it.”

The eyewitness found that calves were dragged by the neck away from their mothers and yanked up by their ears and tails. Some cows suffered from open, bloody wounds. Cattle were forced to go through tight chutes, where they sometimes got stuck trying to escape and trampled one another in panic. Workers used electric shocks and metal-tipped sticks to force them onto crowded lorries headed to JBS abattoirs, where their throats were slit and their skin was cut off.

Brazil has one of the largest cattle herds in the world – 219 million cows, who now occupy over 600,000 square miles, an area equal to the combined land mass of France, Germany, and Ukraine. Just a few short decades ago, this area was covered with lush, valuable rainforest.

JBS produces 10 million hides annually through its 26 factories scattered across three continents. In addition to clothing and accessories, its leather has also been linked to car interiors for Jaguar, Volkswagen, Toyota, Volvo, and other major car brands worldwide

Broadcast-quality footage is available for download here, and photographs are available here. PETA’s motto reads, in part, that “animals are not ours to wear.” For more information, please visit