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Dozens of European Retailers Come Out Against Australian Wool

Written by PETA | March 21, 2008

Here’s the big news I was hinting at in the last post: H&M, which recently pledged to stop buying wool from Australian sources that still use the mulesing mutilation (essentially, slicing up sheep’s backsides), has set off a chain reaction throughout Europe: Following H&M’s announcement, 17 other major Swedish retailers have made the same pledge, and a coalition of 31 European retailers have announced that they are considering or have decided to stop using wool from mulesed lambs. On top of all this, 10 Danish retailers have withdrawn their support of mulesing, and the Western Australia Department of Agriculture has announced that it will stop mulesing.

What does this all add up to? The total amount of cancelled orders of Aussie wool from Europe as a result of these decisions comes to 550,000 bales of wool. This is a big wakeup call to Aussie wool farmers who continue to mutilate lambs, and a strong message to wool industry executives that their continued refusal to adopt humane practices will directly affect their bottom line.

For more information on the fallout from this recent outcry against the Australian wool industry, here’s the letter that PETA President Ingrid Newkirk sent to Australian Prime Minister Kevin Rudd last week:


Commenting is closed.
  • adrian smeda says:

    Australia just got smashT! by PETA!

  • TKS says:

    Where can we find the list of companies that have boycotted the purchase of such wool?

  • Jo says:

    You guys have absolutely no IDEA!!! Have any of you ever seen a fly blown sheep and how much pain it causes?! Mulesing is currently the only way to treat it. Are farmers supposed to sit by and watch their animals die a slow and painful death? WAKE UP!!! none of you have any idea what it’s like to live on the land it’s a case of being cruel to be kind.

  • Michele says:

    Phil as soon as Pamela Anderson found out that her Uggs were made of sheepskin she immediately stopped wearing them… Sometimes people just need to be educated about things like that. For example many people do not realize that most ties are made from silk that comes from silkworms being boiled alive while in their cocoons…

  • lynda downie says:

    Kurt K Ana is one of the most profound thinkers on this board.

  • Phil says:

    Australians are use o be bashed by idiots yet you have Pamela Anderson standing up for PETA wearing a pair of ugg boots made out of sheep skin and other celebrities wearing wool products. Why dont we all just wear synthetic clothing and kill the planet faster with poisons and increase the carbon out put. Wow just look at China and the poisons they put out to supply the entire world with cheap products.

  • Kurt K says:

    Slaves were humans! Not sheep! A bit of a difference don’t you think? Actually you don’t think so that is what is so messed up.

  • Ana says:

    “Let them do what they want. It’s their” slaves said the slaveowner to the abolitionist.

  • Scott says:

    what more do you want? if we stop using mulsing immediently then hundreds of thousands of sheep will become flyblown. Australian farmers are phasing it out by 2010. They need a runout period. I know everyone form both sides could just fight about it nonstop but if you look at the whole situation then farmers are doing everything in their power to save the sheep from as much pain as possible. When a sheep gets flyblown it dies slowly and painfully as the maggots eat it inside out. Iv seen what a flyblown sheep looks like and its not pretty. The best option they have at the moment is mulsing if we want to have the least chance of the sheep getting flyblown. The other option is spraying several types of chemicals onto the sheeps body which prevents flys laying eggs but it does not work as well as mulsing. Sorry but Im sure the sheep would prefer a few minutes of pain then hours of numbness rather than days and weeks of being eaten alive and your body failing with noone being able to help because maggots are eating you from the inside

  • Kurt K says:

    I don’t know. I don’t konw what I would do with out my SmartWool socks! They are so comfortable and warm! You can’t fake the feel of wool!

  • Michele says:

    Scottikins so you think it’s okay for sheep to have to be grateful that they are mulesed when they are young in order to prevent flystrike? Humans should NEVER have interfered with genetics for these unfortunate sheep nor for plants or ANY earthling including cloning that’s just creepy! If you are still in school and are TRULY interested in educating yourself read “Animal Liberation” by Peter Singer…

  • rojo says:

    Mike Q excellent comment unfortunately breeding 70 million bare breech sheep does take time. Time allowed for in Peta’s agreement with Australian wool but not adhered to by peta for cheap point scoring. No matter how you look at the issue the end result is a bare breeched sheep so the concept of mulesing wasn’t wrong. The implementation being the problem. Ana are you sure you don’t have that a bit backwards ie stopping wearing wool before stopping the killing for meat. Wool producing sheep have a much longer life. Promote wool if you would prefer an annual haircut to an earlier death.

  • Ronixis says:

    Let them do what they want. It’s their livestock.

  • Mike Quinoa says:

    Jacki Wouldn’t breeding for barebreech or smoothskinned sheep solve the problem?

  • Amber Falobas says:


  • Jacki says:

    maybe people who know nothing about this issue should try looking at a flyblown sheep before they comment….. maggots that live in the bum and eventually live under the skin over the whole animal! awesome! NOT farmers would love to prevent this another way being a farmers wife i know they dnt enjoy it but no one has come up with a better way so this is how it is why dont you all try and come up with a better way instead of screwing your countrys farmers

  • Anna says:


  • Megan from Australia says:

    I’m Australian and am as passionate about stopping this barbarity as the rest of the world…what’s annoying me is the propoganda that the Sheep Wool industry puts out there that tries to sell the idea that no mulesing flystrike! Clipping the wool from the very same area is called CRUTCHING…it achieves the same result without the breathtaking cruelty…GO PETA!!

  • Linda Mira-Bateman says:

    Thank you to taking up this cause keep the pressure on as local media here eg Weekly Times in Victoria is pro mutilation. Please also keep pressure on Australia re live animal exports millions of animals involved.

  • Scottikins says:

    i know that they are phasing out mulesing by 2010 thats because I have a farm at my school who runs sheep im from Perth WA. They are replacing mulsing with several different types of chemicals spraying these onto the backsides of the sheep to attempt to control flystrike. It means a lot more sheep will become flyblown as it wont be as affective as mulsing but thats the best we can do. Although mulsing is done when the animal is young and it forgets these when its older. I know that if I was a sheep I would prefer having a strip of skin taken off my lower back when i was a little kid rather than being eaten alive by maggots or risk being eaten alive.

  • Mylenne M. Libby says:

    I’m going to print this out and pass it around to people I know. This way more people will show there and Next time i go.. im going to speak with the maneger and thank them for helping!! This way they know people really do care.. Thank you PETA and everyone who helped make this happen..if anyone wants to contact me about any events or want to join me in the netherlands to run any Campaigns .. email me at Dont forget to smile.. its another beaufitul day on planet earth!!

  • rojo says:

  • Caroline says:

    This shocking primitive practice was going on for many yearsthough it has partially come to an end will these barbaric people who indulged in this appalling practice take responsibilty for the countless number of animals that were demonized throughout? This cruelty has to be stopped completely. Only a sick retarded person can engage in practices such as ‘mulesing’ the first time I heard it I couldn’t even believe it was for real. Here’s wishing Peta the best to end this once and for all.

  • Patrick says:

    It would be great if an organisation like PETA could be a partner in funding research that would help implement changes in the industry quicker. This would be a proactive step that could create better understanding between animal rights groups and animal production industries.

  • Aleasha says:

    I never buy wool. The sheep are treated cruelly. I don’t let my boyfriend buy wool either.

  • Ana says:

    The next step is to not wear wool. Then after that don’t eat sheep or lambs. The third step is not to wear sheepskin or lambskin items. I cringe when I see products made of wool see lambs and sheep hanging in butcher shop windows see lambs and sheep waiting at live markets for someone to come in and choose them to be slaughtered or when I see items made of lambskin or sheepskin. I love Easter but I hate seeing the bodies of sheep and lambs as well as other creatureshanging in butcher windows so people can purchase their flesh in order to celebrate Easter. Wow talk about a disconnect of celebrating life and having mercy for all beings. Lamb and sheep are docile gentle and sweet creatures. Slaughtering these herbivores is neither sweet nor gentle. Show sheeplambs compassion. Get the blood off of your hands.

  • Rosie says:

    As an Australian myself I believe mulesing is appalling. I urge all my fellow Australians and my world people to keep boycotting against this awful practice. I believe all animals deserve to be treated with dignity and respect. No animal should be hurt in the name of clothes. If you insist on buying wool make sure it’s from New Zealand at least.

  • lynda downie says:

    Great news! And good for Ingrid for keeping the pressure on the Australian wool industry to stop trying to sneak the clip method in the back door.

  • Robson Nascimento says:

    I have recently learned about this terrible practice. Please tell everyone you know and urge them to voice their opposition to mulesing mutilation to the Australian government. Thank you PETA!

  • Jaclyn says:

    That is awesome news!

  • tiffany says:

    this is the best news ive heard all day. i wont even buy wool! and im glad to hear other people feeling the same way

  • John Carmody says:

    This wonderful news. Here in Ireland i would love to take this campaign up.

  • Judith, Freedom Fighter for Animals says:

    It’s about time. Peace!