Shareholders Want Answers: Is H&M Losing Sales by Not Ditching Down?

For Immediate Release:
March 7, 2024

Moira Colley 202-483-7382

New York

The demand for animal- and environmentally friendly products continues to skyrocket, with the market projected to surpass $11 billion in 2027, yet H&M—whose sales have been in a steady decline of late—continues to sell products made of down despite multiple exposés revealing that it’s cruelly produced. Is the company driving away compassionate customers by continuing to stock its shelves with down? That’s what PETA’s new shareholder resolution aims to find out.

An image from PETA Asia’s investigation into Vietnamese duck farms and slaughterhouses. Credit: PETA

PETA—which owns stock in the company—submitted the resolution ahead of H&M’s spring 2024 annual meeting, calling on the board to commission a report that examines whether the company is damaging its reputation and losing sales by continuing to produce and sell products that contain down. The resolution points out that PETA entities have released nine exposés of the down industry—all of which reveal that filthy living conditions, intense suffering, and violent slaughter are the norm and that “responsible” labels are little more than industry humane washing.

“Every down jacket is made of feathers from suffering birds who lived in filth and died in agony,” says PETA Executive Vice President Tracy Reiman. “As a shareholder, PETA is calling on H&M to address the cost of alienating kind shoppers who prefer to stay far away from the cruelty on its shelves.”

A PETA Asia investigation into Vietnamese duck farms and slaughterhouses—which provide suppliers, including one that listed H&M as a customer, with purportedly “responsible” down—shows ducks suffering from bloody wounds on lots strewn with feces and being stabbed in the neck while still conscious. Many of the birds continued to move for more than a minute after workers slashed their necks. Following the investigation, H&M removed the “responsible” down label from its online offerings in the U.S.—indicating that it knows the designation is a sham—but it continues to sell down.

PETA—whose motto reads, in part, that “animals are not ours to wear”—points out that Every Animal Is Someone and offers free Empathy Kits for people who need a lesson in kindness. For more information, please visit or follow the group on X, Facebook, or Instagram.

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