For Immediate Release:
23 November 2017

Animal Rights Group’s Ad Targets Australian Wool Innovation

Boorowa – Amid renewed concerns about mulesing – a painful mutilation whereby Australian wool farmers restrain lambs’ legs between metal bars and carve huge chunks of skin from their backsides – People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) is negotiating with an outdoor advertiser to put up a billboard targeting the industry group Australian Wool Innovation (AWI). PETA plans to place the ad near Boorowa, the home of AWI Chair Wal Merriman’s merino stud farm.

The ad shows a lamb being mulesed beside the words “Australian Wool Innovation? Retailers and the public aren’t buying it. See more at PETA.org.au/AWIFailure.”

It’s been a decade since the Australian wool industry promised to “fast-track” the industry away from mulesing, and still, 80 per cent of Australian wool comes from lambs who were mulesed, mostly without pain relief.

“There’s nothing innovative about continuing to hack off the backsides of lambs,” says PETA Corporate Liaison Emily Rice. “Australian Wool Innovation’s failure to take meaningful steps to end mulesing is shameful, and, understandably, damaging Australia’s reputation internationally.”

Even after being mulesed, sheep continue to suffer for wool production. An  exposé of the wool industry in Australia – the source of 90 per cent of the world’s merino wool – revealed that workers punched scared sheep in the face, stamped and stood on their heads and necks, and beat and jabbed them with electric clippers and a hammer. PETA – whose motto reads, in part, that “animals are not ours to wear” – notes that shearers are often paid by volume, encouraging fast, violent work that can leave gaping wounds on sheep’s bodies.

For more information about the cruelty of the wool industry, please visit PETA.org.au.