New investigation

The screams of angora rabbits in France should not be drowned out by music!

Once again we are forced to publish stomach-churning images in order to denounce the violence inherent in the breeding and farming of angora rabbits.

Stop Angora

In 2020 the usual method of collecting their ‘wool’ is still to fasten them by their paws to a board, stretch them out so that they cannot move and pull out almost all their fur by the handful.

As a result of the decision of the Council of State to allow this method to continue we have submitted a complaint to the European Court of Justice.

Having heard the strident cries of rabbits having their fur pulled out the first time we infiltrated this sordid business in 2016, followed by the images published in 2018 and those taken this year, once again it is impossible not to be appalled that the authorities in France are continuing to turn a blind eye to the abuse. When we complained to the Council of State, the Ministry of Agriculture and Food insisted that the plucking process was non-invasive. They maintained that it was legal, basing their assertion on the conclusions of a report by INRA (Institut national de la recherche agronomique – National Institute of Agricultural Research) that turned out never to have existed!

A complaint to Europe

In parallel with numerous joint actions with our partner PETA France to raise public awareness, we decided to bring a complaint to Europe, because this simply cannot go on. The chilling cries of these rabbits, whose fur is pulled out without anaesthetic several times a year, sometimes shreds of their skin coming off with it – that must end!

Our latest investigation strengthens our determination to save these rabbits

The rabbits struggle wildly, attempting with all their strength to break free. And when the breeder resumes plucking, which is tantamount to torture, they scream in terror and pain. In the wild rabbits use their voices only in very exceptional circumstances: when there is great danger. Most on these premises are does. The bucks are killed shortly after they are born because their fur is not as dense. Only those that have the densest fur and are therefore the most profitable are kept for breeding. Approximately one hundred and seventy does spend their entire lives shut up in the hutches of this well-known breeder, plucked in this way several times a year, often in the presence of the breeder’s dog and sometimes other rabbits. During our infiltration we even discovered that he sold sick animals to vivisection laboratories – the ultimate horror for these poor creatures. Please support our complaint to the European Court of Justice by signing our petition !

translated by Patricia Fairey


For the banning of breeding Angora rabbits and for the trade of their wool

  • E-mail

“We, the undersigned, consider:

  • That the rules in force concerning the killing of animals are not respected: some rabbits are killed by smacking them behind the head or throwing them on the ground, especially during the sexing process;
  • That the conditions of detention do not ensure the well-being of the rabbits: resulting to the use of Lagodendron, which is supposed to induce hair loss implies a forced fasting of 2 days without guarantee of the result; rabbits are isolated in cages without access to the outside and without enrichment; no real protection against the cold is applied after hair removal;
  • That the depilation involves an inappropriate immobilization process and a process that gives rise to pain and fear as evidenced by the cries and urination of rabbits;
  • Injuries resulting from hair removal are not treated.
  • Ask the Minister of Agriculture to ban the breeding of Angora rabbits on the grounds that their breeding conditions do not meet the minimum standards of welfare and that the depilation that is practiced there is an act of proven cruelty. The sale and purchase of products using Angora rabbit hair should also be banned.”

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From February to July 2016, our investigators had infiltrated six French farms. Get to know the operators, gain confidence, and gather information without alerting suspicion. The operation is long because rabbits are not depilated every day. There are also the stages of reproduction, sexing young rabbits, food production with the flesh of unwanted males (less productive in hair growth, most males end up in pies, others on the bonfire) and the waiting between epilation’s, three times a year. The operation is a permanent stress for the rabbits, stripped after the “harvesting of their hair” and exposed to severe temperature differences in hutches without adequate protection.

In some farms, rabbits are depilated in front of the cages of their fellow companions. They have to pay witness to the scene and hear the screaming which obviously adds to their stress…

Images and comments recorded are chilling: “I saw two hours spent on a rabbit that was torn up all over. Sometimes you tell yourself, it’s better to knock him on the head, that one. The investigation pays off: it bases the legal requirements to stop such practices.

One Voice has decided to file a petition for cruelty to animals and for various violations of the provisions of the Rural Code. The complaint was filed against one main French breeder, located in Loire-Atlantique. Our determination is all the greater as this breeder has admitted to reselling cancerous rabbits to a specialized laboratory (for the price of rabbit meat). The rabbits go on to endure further suffering. Again, another despicable way to ensure a profit is made. The head of the French sector for angora will therefore have to explain to the justice system its conception of animal welfare.

An investigation against the grain conducted in 2016

The investigators of One Voice for several months now have managed to infiltrate French Angora rabbit farms. The unpublished images of their investigation clearly show the suffering of rabbits who scream in fear and pain when they have their hair torn out, and sometimes even the skin … During several years these rabbits will be taken out of their small cages only to be tied to a table, bent into the worst positions, during a painful session of hair removal.

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Two years after our investigation: revelations about a phantom report and new images

At the end of 2016, we had revealed the horror endured by rabbits for those who like to take advantage of their soft angora hair. Following our investigation into French farms, we filed a complaint against one of the breeders. The Ministry of Ecology has so far turned a deaf ear to our requests, saying that the methods of hair removal have been validated by the INRA (National Institute of Agronomic Research). Which in a report shows that they do not constitute abuse? We asked to see this report from INRA: it turns out that it does not exist!

Still, we receive new images from one of the farms in which we had investigated, nothing has changed! Hair removal is still practiced in the same way, and these rabbits are still without adequate protection against temperature variations…

We continue this fight, with the petition, more necessary than ever now, to challenge the ministry and ban these practices as well as the sale and purchase of products using Angora rabbit hair.