One of the centres of peoples homes is the bed, there’s nothing that beats coming home and jumping into your fluffy clean bed sheets to cure the stress of the day…. I always look forward to this moment, of curling into my soft duvet, snuggled up with a good book. I would never imagine this to be tainted with anything but tranquility and peace. Well sadly due to the Down Feather Industry, for a lot of people this usually comes with a lot of hidden pain and suffering.
In most stores, the moment you splash out on a ‘fancier’ duvet set, it’ll be made out of down, it’s seen as a luxury item that we all need in our lives. But the procedure behind getting Down feathers is largely unheard of but so awful that it needs to be put out there so it can be avoided.
Down feathers are taken from the soft layers of feathers closest to the birds skin, generally around the neck and chest, this is due to the fact that this feathers do not have quills and provide a more luxurious feel.
They are generally taken from duck and geese during slaughter. Plucking begins when a bird is just 10 weeks old, the feathers are ripped from their skin swiftly, bringing tremendous pain and a lot of the time causing the skin to rip. This is then stitched up quickly using needle and thread (all of this under no anaesthetic of any sort), to be repeated every 6 weeks until the birds are sent to slaughter.
Another way this is achieved is from foie gras, so not only are these birds being stuffed with copious amounts of fat, they are also enduring a life full of pain.
I could keep going on about the horrors of this industry, but it’ll just make me angry. Instead here’s a link to PETA’s video, if you would like to know more:
So now we know the facts, what can we to replace this?
Theres so many different synthetic versions of bedding, mattresses and pillows that replicate the lightweight and softness of down whilst also being a hell of a lot cheaper and more hygienic too!
The materials used for these are: Ingeo (corn fibre), Tencel (eucalyptus fibre), bamboo, cotton, modal, microfibre, microclowd and primalift. So there can’t be an argument of choice. They are generally able to go through a washing machine aswell, which means that all the dust mites and bacteria that tend to collect in between down feathers would be a thing of the past.
If we all switch to these great alternatives, the demand would end, which would mean this dirty business would disappear. We all claim to love these animals, why would we want their pain in our homes?