Federated Farmers hits out at 'PETA's shear crazy attack on wool industry'

The campaign is using celebrities to promote the anti wool message.
The campaign is using celebrities to promote the anti wool message. Photo credit: Twitter/AliciaSilv

A global animal rights campaign has accused the wool industry of cruelty, putting farmers here on the defensive.

People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) has launched a campaign urging people not to buy wool.

Actresses Alicia Silverstone and Danielle Alonso have both posed naked for the campaign, appearing in photos with the caption: "I would rather go naked than wear wool."

PETA president Ingrid Newkirk alleges the wool industry is rife with cruelty and causes sheep undue stress in the shearing process.

"The shearers, a lot of them are on amphetamines because they have to work at speed. Men punching these sheep. They smash them on their backs, they punch them on their face," she told The Guardian in last year.

But Federated Farmers has called it "shear crazy… quite frankly ridiculous and another predictable example of what PETA resort to when they seek attention on a global scale".

"Our wool industry is globally renowned for quality and ethics, unlike PETA which has a particular worldview that they want everyone to conform to and, it's obvious they don't care how they go about achieving that," said spokesman Miles Anderson.

He says shearing is good for sheep - it can prevent flies laying eggs on their skin and stops them having to carry heavy fleece over summer.

Sheep do not stop growing wool. The current world record for fleece is held by an Australian sheep with a 40kg coat found in 2015.