Mattel Orders SeaWorld Trainer Barbie Out of the Pool

PETA Confirms: Toy Gets Shelved Over Concerns About Marine-Mammal Abuse

For Immediate Release:
April 24, 2015

David Perle 202-483-7382

El Segundo, Calif. – Mattel has confirmed that it will no longer produce SeaWorld Trainer Barbie. PETA contacted the company immediately after the doll launched, pointing out that SeaWorld confines far-ranging orcas to barren concrete tanks, where they’re denied everything that’s natural and important to them. A Mattel representative has now told the group, “We’re well aware of and very sensitive to all the issues that you outlined … I can confirm we don’t make that doll anymore. … We certainly don’t have any plans to produce the doll again in the future.”

Mattel is the latest to join the growing list of companies—including Panama Jack, Virgin America, Hyundai Motor America, and Southwest Airlines—that have chosen to cut ties with the park in the wake of the release of Blackfish, the documentary that exposed SeaWorld’s history of cruelty to the animals it holds captive.

“With people worldwide appalled by SeaWorld’s cruelty, Mattel’s decision to stop promoting the park is a smart one,” says PETA Executive Vice President Tracy Reiman. “PETA is calling on SeaWorld’s remaining partners to follow Mattel’s kind example and drop this orca-abusing park like a hot potato.”

SeaWorld’s stock has been in a downward spiral—dropping more than 45 percent since the day it was first issued. The company has also been slapped with various shareholder and class action lawsuits.

PETA—whose motto says, in part, that “animals are not ours to use for entertainment”—is calling on SeaWorld to develop ocean sanctuaries in which orcas could be rehabilitated and finally have the opportunity to engage in natural behavior that visitors could observe from nearby “whale watching” centers.

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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