AN anti-wool campaign featuring a fake lamb - and equally fake allegations - highlights the need for better education, say industry stakeholders.
That's why Western Australian advocacy group WAFarmers has launched a crowdfunding campaign to send Jona Weinhofen, the face of the latest latest People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) anti-shearing campaign, to shearing school for a hands-on education about Australia’s wool industry.
The campaign - labelled "shear lies" by Agriculture Minister Barnaby Joyce - features an emotive image of the Australian metalcore musician holding a small foam lamb with open wounds which are supposed to represent shearing injuries. Neither the image nor the PETA website disclose the nature of the prop.
Weinhofen is the most recent celebrity to pose for PETA in a misleading advert which depicts shearing as a barbaric practice which is damaging to animals.
WAFarmers president Dale Park said the fake lamb is only the first of many misrepresentations in the unethical campaign.
“No one that I know would shear a lamb that size – it looks a day old – and certainly they wouldn’t tolerate such a low standard of shearing,” Mr Park said.
“The PETA campaign preys on people that have no knowledge of shearing practices.
“Shearers are trained in best practice technique and any shearer that did that to a sheep would be out of a job.”
It costs $4500 to send a person with no prior experience to shearing school, and if WAFarmers raises this money, it will invite Weinhofen to attend one of these schools "so he is better informed about the practices he is commenting on".
Weinhofen tweeted on Tuesday: "if you raise $4500 and donate it to charity I'll go to any school", but reiterated his belief that shearing is inherently cruel.
If more than $4500 is raised, WAFarmers plans to extend the invitation to the CEO, marketing department and staff at PETA, "to clarify any misconceptions they may have".
To support the campaign visit send-jona-weinhofen-to-shearing-school.