In September 2015, PETA US investigators travelled to South Africa to document what happens inside the largest ostrich slaughter companies in the world, including the exclusive supplier of ostrich skins for Hermès Birkin bags. Investigators saw workers force terrified ostriches into stun boxes – causing many to slip and fall – and then slit their throats. The ostriches next in line watched helplessly as their flockmates were killed right in front of them.
These slaughterhouses supply ostrich skins to Hermès, Prada, Louis Vuitton and other top European fashion houses. Feathers, some of which are ripped out of the ostriches' skin while they are fully conscious, are used in costumes for the Moulin Rouge and festivals like Brazil's Rio Carnival as well as in feather dusters, boas and accessories. Ostrich meat is also sold throughout South Africa and exported primarily to Europe.
While ostriches can live for more than 40 years, farmed ostriches are slaughtered when they are just 1 year old. And while young ostriches typically stay with their parents for up to three years, ostriches raised on factory farms will never even get to meet their parents.
Take action to help these gentle, curious birds.
Join us in putting pressure on luxury fashion houses to remove ostrich and other exotic skins from its collections.