What do you get when you mix PETA, a company that tests on animals, and a roomful of eco-friendly executives? A round of applause, which is what happened when an animal advocate stood up during the Industry Water Award Ceremony in Stockholm and asked Nestlé Chair Peter Brabeck-Letmathe when its tea brand, Nestea, will stop carrying out painful and deadly experiments on animals and switch to cruelty-free non-animal testing methods.
A few weeks ago, Nestlé USA CEO Brad Alford got the same surprise inquisition at the Grocery Manufacturers Association Conference in Colorado Springs.
Experimenters working for Nestea have injected mice with toxic chemicals in order to give them diabetes, then force-fed them tea ingredients before killing them. In another experiment, mice were force-fed tea extracts and then had their leg muscles cut open before being decapitated. In still another test, mice bred to suffer brain damage and rapid aging were locked in dark chambers, and painful shocks were administered to their sensitive feet before the mice were killed.
Not only are these tests not required by law, the results also aren’t even admissible as proof of tea’s health benefits—the very reason that Nestlé claims it conducts the experiments. You can give Nestlé executives a surprise of your own by visiting PETA’s new website, NesteaCruelTEA.com and e-mailing AlfordCEO of Nestlé S.A. Paul Bulcke and to ask them to call off the killing.
Written by Michelle Kretzer