Usually when one thinks of animal testing, cosmetics and drug companies come to mind. But Unilever— who owns the Lipton and PG Tips tea companies— was recently caught red-handed practicing torturous animal tests of their products.
Tea? Really? Why would anyone need to test their tea on animals? Well, Unilever was determined to be able to make health claims for Lipton products, which meant they needed lab results. So they reportedly fed rabbits high-cholesterol diets to harden their arteries, then fed them the tea to attempt to reduce the lesions. Even worse, piglets were reportedly given strains of E. coli, then given tea to test for prevention of… well, E. coli symptoms (you know the one I mean). It gets even more horrifying, but it doesn’t really need to be discussed. Suffice to say, the poor baby pigs were put through a lot of pain.
Fortunately, PETA stepped in. The organization threatened Unilever with an international campaign against them, and Unilever quickly caved. Shortly after, the company announced an immediate end to animal testing of their products. The battle is won, but the war isn’t over as Unilever still claims that animal testing will be performed when it is “necessary” or “demanded” by the government.
Hopefully that will change as well, as animal testing often doesn’t even yield the same results as human tests do. Plus, does anybody really think that Lipton tea can rid you of E. coli?