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Supermarkets Drop Coconut Products As Investigation Exposes Monkey Labor

by | July 4, 2020

A number of UK supermarkets have removed certain coconut products now known to be produced using monkey labor.

An investigation was led by People For The Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA), which highlighted how monkeys are exploited on a number of coconut picking farms in Thailand.

PETA revealed how the animals are taken from the wild and forced to become “coconut-picking machines” — regularly collecting up to 1,000 coconuts a day each.

Waitrose, Ocado, Co-op, Morrisons, and Boots have all pledged to remove any items produced with coconuts from these farms from their shelves.

“Animal Welfare Policy”

“As part of our animal welfare policy, we have committed to never knowingly sell any products sourced from monkey labour,” said Waitrose in a statement.

“As an ethical retailer, we do not permit the use of monkey labour to source ingredients for our products,” said a spokesperson for Co-op.

A spokesperson for Sainsbury’s — the second largest supermarket chain in the UK — said, “We are actively reviewing our ranges and investigating this complex issue with our suppliers.”

monkey labor coconut farm
The monkeys can be trained to pick up to 1,000 coconuts a day (omers/Shutterstock.com)

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Monkey Labor in Thailand

PETA revealed it has discovered eight farms in Thailand that are using monkey labor to farm coconuts, with these products being shipped for use around the world.

The animals are used to increase profits as they can pick up to ten times more coconuts per day than a human worker could.

After being captured, the monkeys are trained in dedicated facilities — not just to pick fruit, but also to perform tricks to entertain tourists.

“Extreme Stress”

“The animals at these facilities – many of whom are illegally captured as babies – displayed stereotypic behaviour indicative of extreme stress,” said PETA in a statement.

“Monkeys were chained to old tyres or confined to cages that were barely large enough for them to turn around in.”

“One monkey in a cage on a lorry bed was seen frantically shaking the cage bars in a futile attempt to escape, and a screaming monkey on a rope desperately tried to run away from a handler.”

“PETA is calling on decent people never to support the use of monkey labour by shunning coconut products from Thailand.”

Are you surprised that monkeys are being exploited in this way? Share your thoughts with us in the comments below!

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One Response to “Supermarkets Drop Coconut Products As Investigation Exposes Monkey Labor”

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