Target Execs to Face Pressure From PETA Over Down Sales at Shareholder Meeting

For Immediate Release:
June 13, 2023

Brittney Williams 202-483-7382

Austin, Texas

At Target’s annual shareholder meeting tomorrow, a PETA representative will ask why the company still sells down even after Target was implicated in a damning PETA Asia investigation. PETA—which has repeatedly alerted the company to the abuse outlined in the exposé—will point out that investigators visited duck farms and slaughterhouses linked to the misleadingly labeled “Responsible Down Standard”–certified suppliers that do business with Target.

The undercover investigators documented that ducks are forced to live in filthy sheds and on barren, feces-filled lots, despite Target’s claims that it obtains down only from “ethical” sources. Inside a slaughterhouse, birds were hung upside down in shackles, knifed through the neck, and left to bleed out. Workers also killed birds in people’s homes, cutting the legs off live, struggling ducks.

“Conscious birds were shackled and stabbed in Vietnam so that Target could have feathers to stuff inside pillows,” says PETA Executive Vice President Tracy Reiman. “PETA is calling on the company to ditch down and stick to the sustainable, luxurious vegan fill that customers already love.”

PETA has released nine exposés of the down industry from nearly 50 farms in six countries, all revealing that suffering, violence, and killing are ubiquitous. More information is available here, and the full text of PETA’s shareholder question is below.

PETA—whose motto reads, in part, that “animals are not ours to abuse in any way”—opposes speciesism, a human-supremacist worldview. For more information on PETA’s investigative newsgathering and reporting, please visit, listen to The PETA Podcast, or follow the group on Twitter, Facebook, or Instagram.

PETA’s shareholder question follows.

Target claims to hold itself “to the highest ethical standards.” Yet it sells down feathers despite knowing how birds suffer. PETA has released nine down exposés from nearly 50 farms in six countries—including farms connected to so-called “responsible” suppliers. Each exposé revealed egregious cruelty to birds.

Target is implicated in an investigation that took place on farms and at slaughterhouses in Vietnam that were linked to Responsible Down Standard–certified suppliers. A worker was filmed cutting conscious ducks’ necks as they struggled.

In another recent investigation into a Responsible Down Standard–certified farm, this time in Russia, investigators saw geese shrieking as their necks were repeatedly hacked at before the birds were decapitated.

Target touts the Responsible Down Standard certification, yet the standard is repeatedly exposed for failing to protect animals and misleading customers.

When will Target align its actions with its ethical-sourcing claims and stop selling down?

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