Columbia Sportswear Bans Alpaca Fleece After PETA Appeal

Company's Decision Follows Undercover Investigation Showing Animals Bleeding and Crying Out

For Immediate Release:
October 12, 2020

Contact:
Moira Colley 202-483-7382

Portland, Ore. – After viewing a first-of-its-kind PETA exposé revealing that crying alpacas are roughly shorn, cut open, and left bleeding from deep wounds, Columbia Sportswear—one of the largest outdoor apparel and footwear companies in the world—has banned alpaca fleece across all its brands, including SOREL, prAna, and Mountain Hardwear.

PETA’s investigation into the world’s largest privately owned alpaca farm in Peru, Mallkini, shows that workers slammed alpacas—some of whom were pregnant—onto tables, tied them tightly by the legs into a device reminiscent of a medieval torture rack, and pulled hard, nearly wrenching their legs out of their sockets. Terrified of being pinned down, the animals spit, cried out, and vomited in fear as workers grabbed them by the ears, roughly sheared them, and threw them to the concrete floor. Their bloody cuts were crudely stitched up with a needle and thread. In response, Peruvian authorities are investigating Mallkini for possible violations of the country’s animal protection laws.

“Columbia Sportswear’s decision will go a long way in helping to prevent vulnerable alpacas from being abused and shorn bloody for their fleece,” says PETA Executive Vice President Tracy Reiman. “PETA is asking kind consumers to do their part to end this cruelty by leaving alpaca items on the rack.”

In thanks, PETA sent the company a box of delicious vegan chocolates. The group—whose motto reads, in part, that “animals are not ours to wear”—points out that Columbia Sportswear joins Valentino, UNIQLO, and Esprit in banning alpaca. PETA is now calling on Anthropologie to follow suit.

Photos from the investigation are available here, and broadcast-quality footage is available here. PETA opposes speciesism, a human-supremacist worldview. For more information, please visit PETA.org.

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“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

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