You’ve likely heard about PETA’s new investigation showing that monkeys in Thailand are often kept in chains and forced to pick coconuts for use in coconut milk and other products. Our investigators visited eight farms on which monkeys are forced to pick coconuts—including those that supply the brands Aroy-D and Chaokoh—as well as several monkey-training facilities and a coconut-picking competition—and documented shocking animal abuse and exploitation.
The investigation made headlines around the world and prompted a number of large companies to stop carrying products made using monkey labor. Many people have pledged not to buy products from companies that force monkeys to pick coconuts.
The investigation will surely end monkey labor in Thailand—or at least curtail the cruelty in the Thai coconut industry—but this isn’t the first time that we have helped monkeys and other animals in the country.
PETA Exposes Cruel Tourist Traps in Thailand
We posted a video on social media showing that monkeys like Ning Nong are controlled using restrictive leashes, metal collars, and other cruel tools and are forced to perform meaningless tricks for tourist—when they aren’t kept isolated inside wire cages, that is. Millions of people around the world saw this video—and the news stories it generated—and many opted to avoid such cruel and exploitative tourist traps.
When we released footage of the suffering elephants, primates, and other animals at Samutprakarn Crocodile Farm and Zoo in Thailand, Ctrip, one of Asia’s largest travel companies, stopped selling tickets to the zoo. Thailand’s Flying Elephant Travel also cut ties with the cruel zoo after hearing from us.
And the King’s Cup Elephant Polo Tournament in Thailand ceased operations because of a PETA campaign against elephant polo games, meaning that inhumane elephant polo “games” are no longer held in Thailand!
Rather than patronizing animal acts and exhibits, tourists should visit animal-friendly spots, such as Boon Lott’s Elephant Sanctuary.
Bettas Deserve Better
PETA speaks up for all animals, from enormous elephants to tropical fish who are crammed in small bowls. One of our investigations in Thailand showed that betta fish suffer for the global fish trade—which includes large overseas companies like Petco in the United States—and encouraged people not to buy fish.
PETA Works to Close Bangkok’s Pata Zoo
We actively campaign against Pata Zoo in Thailand’s capital city. From doing a demonstration featuring PETA members in colorful bodypaint to releasing an anti-captivity ad with top models to working with actor Gillian Anderson, who sent Pata Zoo’s owner a letter asking him to close the zoo and send the animals to reputable sanctuaries, we are keeping the heat on the zoo until animals are no longer imprisoned there.
PETA Promotes Vegan Thai Food
Both Chiang Mai and Bangkok nabbed spots on our 2017 list of the Top 10 Vegan-Friendly Cities in Asia, scoring third and seventh, respectively. Our supporters dressed as zombies and attended the Bangkok Vegetarian Festival to remind everyone that, like humans, other animals are made of flesh, blood, and bones.
We also encourage people to attend the Phuket Vegetarian Festival in Thailand to enjoy some tasty vegan food. We named Green Monday the Company of the Year in 2019 for producing OmniMeat, a meatless pork made from pea protein, soy, shiitake mushrooms, and rice that can be found across Bangkok. In addition, the creative and compassionate minds at Ogilvy & Mather Bangkok were named PETA U.S.’ Company of the Year in 2016 for producing vegan leather that “came back to life,” making shoppers rethink purchasing animal skin.
The Tide Is Turning for Animals in Thailand
We have no doubt that we’ll be able to recognize more kind companies in the future—and praise Thailand’s forward-thinking residents for continuing to take steps to help animals. We’re launching Thai Facebook and Instagram pages so that compassionate Thais will be able to follow our activities more easily.
If you’re interested in joining PETA and spreading compassion in Thailand as well as around the world, we’re currently looking for a Campaign Coordinator for Thailand to promote our activities in the country. Could that be you?