Ever wonder how the down feathers used in down-filled comforters, jackets, and vests got from the birds to your back? There’s nothing warm and fuzzy about it. Undercover video footage obtained by PETA reveals that down production is a nightmare for birds.
The video footage shows workers picking up and restraining geese by their delicate necks or by a single wing. The frightened birds are squeezed, upside down, between workers’ knees while the workers rip out fistfuls of feathers. One worker was photographed sitting on a goose’s neck in order to prevent her from escaping.
Once their feathers have been ripped out—exposing raw skin—many birds lie on the floor, bleeding and shaking in fear and pain. Birds are frequently plucked so violently that they are left with gaping wounds. When this happens, workers often use a needle and thread to sew up the wound—without any painkillers.
Buying down also supports foie gras cruelty, as geese and ducks are often used by both industries. Outdoors outfitter The North Face recently admitted that it was using down from foie gras farms, despite previous claims that none of its down came from geese who were force-fed or live-plucked.
You can help by pledging to refuse to buy any down-filled products. Look for outerwear and bedding insulated with Primaloft, “down alternative,” and other bird-friendly products.