More shops ban the sale of angora wool after video exposes cruelty

An online clothing store has joined high-street shops in pulling angora products from its virtual shelves

China is currently responsible for 90 per cent of the world's angora wool supply
China is currently responsible for 90 per cent of the world's angora wool supply

Online retailer ASOS is the latest brand to join high-street stores Marks and Spencer, Next, and H&M in stopping the sale of angora products after a video exposing the cruelty that rabbits suffer went viral online.

The footage released by animal rights organisation PETA shows workers in Chinese factories ripping the fur from the bodies of screeching rabbits.

China is currently responsible for 90 per cent of the world’s angora wool supply.

Investigators claim to have witnessed animals being abused at the ten different angora farms they visited.

At half of the sites the extreme practice of live plucking was used to remove rabbits’ fur.

The footage shows how white rabbits are held by their necks against wooden boards while their fur is hand-plucked, leaving the bare animals with angry, red skin.

Workers pluck rather than shear the fur because the longer, plucked hair sells for more than double the £22-£28 per kilogram that cut hair fetches.

Warmer than sheep’s wool and cheaper than cashmere, angora fur is thought to be harvested from over 50 million rabbits on farms in China, producing more than 4,000 tonnes of the soft fur a year.

For plucking to not cause the rabbits pain, loose fur must be removed after two weeks.

According to PETA spokesman Ben Williamson the animals also suffer from their cages and are “surrounded by their own waste.”

“After their fur is yanked out, the gentle, sensitive rabbits are left in shock, able only to lie motionless inside their tiny, filthy cages,” he said.

He added: “The cages offer little protection from the elements”.

“They are forced to spend their entire miserable lives standing on the thin cage wires that constantly cut into their sensitive footpads, never having a chance to dig, jump or run around.”

By deciding to remove all angora products from its international websites and shelves “ASOS has done the right thing for animals and consumers," Mimi Bekhechi of PETA UK told The Daily Mail.

A spokesman from the company said: “ASOS firmly believes it is not acceptable for animals to suffer in the name of fashion or cosmetics. ASOS is a member of the Fur Free Alliance of retailers and recognises that the sourcing of angora and other rabbit hair products causes distress to animals.

“As such, we will remove all ASOS and third party branded product that fails to meet the policy and no new orders will be raised containing angora or other rabbit hair."

Customers who have bought any products containing angora are entitled to a full refund.

PETA, which is leading the boycott, has not released the names of the farms to ensure its sources are protected.

Register for free to continue reading

Registration is a free and easy way to support our truly independent journalism

By registering, you will also enjoy limited access to Premium articles, exclusive newsletters, commenting, and virtual events with our leading journalists

Please enter a valid email
Please enter a valid email
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Please enter your first name
Special characters aren’t allowed
Please enter a name between 1 and 40 characters
Please enter your last name
Special characters aren’t allowed
Please enter a name between 1 and 40 characters
You must be over 18 years old to register
You must be over 18 years old to register
Opt-out-policy
You can opt-out at any time by signing in to your account to manage your preferences. Each email has a link to unsubscribe.

By clicking ‘Create my account’ you confirm that your data has been entered correctly and you have read and agree to our Terms of use, Cookie policy and Privacy notice.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy policy and Terms of service apply.

Already have an account? sign in

By clicking ‘Register’ you confirm that your data has been entered correctly and you have read and agree to our Terms of use, Cookie policy and Privacy notice.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy policy and Terms of service apply.

Register for free to continue reading

Registration is a free and easy way to support our truly independent journalism

By registering, you will also enjoy limited access to Premium articles, exclusive newsletters, commenting, and virtual events with our leading journalists

Already have an account? sign in

By clicking ‘Register’ you confirm that your data has been entered correctly and you have read and agree to our Terms of use, Cookie policy and Privacy notice.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy policy and Terms of service apply.

Join our new commenting forum

Join thought-provoking conversations, follow other Independent readers and see their replies

Comments

Thank you for registering

Please refresh the page or navigate to another page on the site to be automatically logged inPlease refresh your browser to be logged in