Amazon Sued Over Sale of Donkey-Based Products, Allegedly Illegal in California

Published by Elena Waldman.

If you see “gelatina nigra” on a food or medicine label, stay away. This cruelly obtained ingredient is made from donkey skin. And now, a new lawsuit against Amazon alleges that the online retailer’s distribution and sale of products containing gelatina nigra—more commonly known as ejiao or “donkey-hide gelatin”—violates California law.

The lawsuit, filed by the Center for Contemporary Equine Studies, points out that California’s Prohibition of Horse Slaughter and Sale of Horsemeat for Human Consumption Act of 1998 prohibits the sale of “horsemeat”—which the lawsuit asserts includes any part of any equine, including donkeys—for human consumption. The complaint demands that Amazon stop selling ejiao immediately. 

The demand for ejiao is decimating global donkey populations.

Every year, millions of donkeys are slaughtered so that their skins can be boiled down to make gelatin for ejiao.

A PETA Asia investigation into China’s ejiao industry blew the lid off the violent abuse of donkeys on farms there, where workers were seen hitting donkeys as young as 5 years old with sledgehammers and beating terrified donkeys with sticks.

Other workers slaughtered donkeys by bludgeoning them in the head before slitting their throats.

Donkeys are imported into China from countries all over the world just to be slaughtered to meet the demand for ejiao products. While Walmart and other retailers have committed to stop selling ejiao after hearing from PETA, Amazon still sells items containing this cruelly obtained ingredient.

donkeys standing in a crowded, dirty pen at a donkey market. The ejiao industry turns donkeys' hide into gelatin for food, medicine, and beauty products, some of which are available on Amazon.

Here’s How YOU Can Help Spare Donkeys

Stay posted for more updates on this groundbreaking lawsuit on, and click the button below to help stop the slaughter of donkeys for medicine in China:

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 Ingrid E. Newkirk

“Almost all of us grew up eating meat, wearing leather, and going to circuses and zoos. We never considered the impact of these actions on the animals involved. For whatever reason, you are now asking the question: Why should animals have rights?” READ MORE

— Ingrid E. Newkirk, PETA President and co-author of Animalkind