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Why Lanolin is Not Cruelty-Free

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Lanolin is produced from the fat in raw wool. It can be found in health and beauty products, printing inks, lubricating greases and varnishes. It is not an acceptable ingredient because of the animal cruelty involved in wool production.

In one of the most egregious practices, sheep are selectively bred for wrinkled skin that yields more wool, and this attracts flies to lay eggs in the moist wrinkles. Sheep have been known to be eaten alive by maggots. To prevent this, ranchers in Australia, one of the largest wool-producing countries, perform “mulesing" - the practice of cutting large pieces of flesh off of the backs of sheeps’ legs and around their tails, all without anesthesia.

When sheep age and their wool production declines, they are sold for slaughter. The wool industry also participates in widespread wildlife “damage control,” killing animals such as kangaroos and coyotes, which it believes negatively affects wool production.

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