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LONDON – The owners of the world’s largest privately owned alpaca farm have responded to allegations of animal cruelty from PETA. The animal rights group this week circulated a video showed alpacas being roughly handled by workers, including claims that, “rough shearing left the animals cut up and bleeding from deep wounds, which were sewn up without adequate pain relief.” The video footage was taken at the Mallkini farm in Peru.

PETA claims Esprit is now phasing out alpaca wool and, as a first step, Gap Inc. and H&M Group have cut ties with Mallkini’s parent company, the Michell Group, which is the leading exporter of alpaca fibre from Peru.

In response, Michell Group has rejected claims that the video’s content constitutes established practices. It also argues that “annual shearing is necessary not only to obtain the fibre but also to prevent the animal from suffering diseases that excess hair would cause.”

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