Video: PETA France Mocks Jane Birkin’s Support of Ostrich-Skin Purses

Actor's Cartoon Face Is Plastered Over Real-Life Footage of Birds Cruelly Slaughtered for Hermès Bags

For Immediate Release:
July 6, 2016

Moira Colley 202-483-7382

Paris – Despite hearing that ostriches are shocked, smacked, killed, plucked, and skinned for Birkin bags, Jane Birkin has refused to speak out against this cruelty. In response, PETA France has created a kitschy parody video, available here, in which a “Jane Birkin” endures all the cruelty that animals experience in the “luxury” skins industry. “C’mon, Jane,” says the video. “Tell Hermès to bag the cruel ostrich leather.”

PETA France—whose motto reads, in part, that “animals are not ours to wear”—has sent the video to Birkin and shared it with its international affiliates and on its social media platforms in the hope that it will inspire the singer to put herself in the place of the animals being killed for the bags that carry her name.The video follows numerous pleas by PETA U.K. urging Birkin to denounce the cruelty of the exotic-skins industry.

PETA’s first-ever exposé of the industrial ostrich-slaughter industry reveals that young ostriches are kept in barren dirt feedlots until they are transported to slaughterhouses. There, the 1-year-old birds are turned upside down in a stunner, their throats are slit, and their feathers are plucked out, creating the bumpy-textured, or “goose bump,” skin used for Birkin bags and other “luxury” goods.

“Every ostrich-skin bag with Jane Birkin’s name on it means that a sensitive young ostrich experienced a miserable life and a terrifying death,” says PETA U.K. Director Mimi Bekhechi. “We urge Ms. Birkin to disassociate herself from Hermès before her name becomes as synonymous with cruelty to animals as Cruella de Vil’s.”

After PETA revealed that crocodiles are kept in crowded, bare concrete pits for crocodile-skin Birkin bags, Birkin asked Hermès to remove her name from the bags—but she soon withdrew the request based on what PETA believes were Hermès’ false assurances.

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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