Tuesday, April 22, 2014

French Airline Criticised for Carrying Live Monkeys for Experimentation

TV Presenter Joins Anti-Vivisection Campaign
Shipping News Feature

FRANCE – MAURITIUS – UK – WORLDWIDE – Air France has come under renewed attack from the National Anti-Vivisection Society (NAVS) during its annual Lab Animal Week for its continuing policy of carrying monkeys as cargo for experimentation. Air France became the last remaining passenger airline shipping monkeys to laboratories when China Southern Airlines updated its policy earlier this year. In 2012, the number of monkeys experimented on in the UK rose by nearly 50% to over 2,000. In the same year, 1,500 monkeys were imported into the UK for experiments; two out of three came from Mauritius.

Readers wishing to know more about the conditions under which these primates are bred and kept before transfer to laboratories for experimentation can find some horrifying allegations on the NAVS site but Air France has been specifically accused by NAVS of allowing breeders to lock the monkeys into crates barely bigger than their bodies. Long tailed macaques are known to deal poorly with stress and struggle to cope with the long journey with some dying before reaching their destination.

Lab Animal Week is now in its 35th year and runs from 21st-27th April and was founded by the NAVS to highlight the suffering of animals used for what it considers unreliable and unnecessary tests. The Air France campaign has been joined by Wendy Turner-Webster, well known anti cruelty campaigner and a former presenter of TV’s Pet Rescue. She commented:

“I can’t believe that Air France continues to fly monkeys to laboratories, when every other passenger airline in the world refuses. The trade in monkeys for experiments is incredibly cruel, and extremely outdated. I am so pleased to be supporting NAVS ‘NON!’ initiative to boycott Air France.”

The appeal for passengers to refuse to use the French airline was spearheaded by NAVS Chief Executive, Jan Creamer, who said:

“We are very glad of Wendy’s support to raise awareness of the cruel lab monkey trade. Our investigations show that lab monkeys endure brutal lives on breeding farms. When the day comes, they are packed into tiny boxes and flown to laboratories; many have died en route. Please join Wendy and the NAVS to help monkeys this Lab Animal Week by letting Air France know you will refuse to fly with them until they stop.”