Sheep Kicked, Beaten, and Skinned Alive: Could This Be Your ‘Italian’ Wool?

PETA Releases Footage From Sheep Farms in Chile, Reveals Suffering Behind Every Wool Suit and Sweater

For Immediate Release:
June 7, 2016

David Perle 202-483-7382

Norfolk, Va. – A new PETA video exposé unveiled this morning at a news conference in Santiago, Chile, shows workers at two sheep farms in Chile slaughtering fully conscious sheep by driving knives into their necks, hacking off lambs’ tails, leaving sheep bleeding after fast and rough shearing, and even skinning an animal alive. Both of these farms supply Standard Wool (Chile) S.A., which exports more than half of its product to Italy, where the wool may then be labeled “Italian wool.”

PETA—whose motto reads, in part, that “animals are not ours to wear”—notes that although J.Crew, Coach, and other retailers claim to sell “Italian wool,” less than 1 percent of the world’s wool actually comes from sheep raised and sheared in Italy. The real source can be places like Chile, which exports at least 30 percent of its wool to Italy.

“When you pay extra for ‘Italian’ wool, you may actually be paying for sheep to be mutilated, beaten, and cut to shreds in front of each other somewhere else in the world,” says PETA Executive Vice President Tracy Reiman. “PETA is calling on shoppers to stick up for sheep everywhere by choosing only animal-free materials.”

PETA’s exposé reveals that one sheep’s legs moved for more than four minutes after her throat had been cut and that no attempts were made to stitch up gaping wounds inflicted by shearing. Lambs who had been separated from their mothers called out and attempted to jump through fencing to get back to them. Workers cut and punched holes into lambs’ ears and severed their tails with a dull knife, all without pain relief. Workers also kicked, shoved, and struck sheep with a rake to force them to move.

In less than two years, PETA has released six exposés of 39 facilities on three continents revealing that sheep are mutilated, abused, and skinned alive for wool, including supposedly “sustainable” and “luxury” wool.

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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