Before taking your next sip of tea, check the label on the tea box or bottle because you might discover that you are drinking a cupful of cruelty to animals. The company behind Lipton teas has been testing (and paying others to test) tea—a beverage that has been consumed for thousands of years—on animals. The tea giant has caused animals to suffer and die simply to make marketing claims about its tea products and ingredients. Not one of the experiments that the company conducted was legally required for beverage makers, and regulators have stated that animal tests are not sufficient to prove a health claim about a product.
In these cruel and painful tests, rabbits, mice, rats, and piglets were tortured and then killed by decapitation and suffocation, among other methods. Following are more of the horrific details about what happened to the animals who were used in the company’s experiments:
Rabbits were fed a high-fat, cholesterol-laden diet, leading to extreme hardening of the arteries. They were then fed tea to see if it affected the lesions that formed on the animals’ arteries. After the experiment, the rabbits’ heads were cut off.
Mice bred to suffer from a painful bowel inflammation were fed tea ingredients in order to see if the tea had any effect on their condition. After the test, experimenters killed the mice by suffocating them or breaking their necks.
Rats were forced to eat a high-sugar diet, and then tea was given to the animals to see if it had an impact on their sugar-induced brain damage. Other rats had their abdominal wall punctured and were fed radioactively labeled tea ingredients through a tube in their stomachs in order to examine the absorption of tea in the body. Then they were killed, frozen with liquid nitrogen, and crushed.
Piglets were exposed to E. coli toxin and then fed tea in order to see if the tea affected fluid loss and diarrhea. As part of the tests, experimenters cut the pigs’ intestines apart while the animals were still alive. The piglets were then killed.
Modern, cruelty-free research methods are available and in use by other leading beverage companies around the world. We need YOU to join us in telling the makers of Lipton to ditch its crueltea to animals and use non-animal methods instead.
Send an e-mail to Dave Lewis, email@example.com, president of Unilever Americas (Lipton’s parent company), and politely ask him to stop testing tea and tea ingredients on animals. If your message can’t be delivered, please e-mail the company using its contact form.
Also, make sure that your voice is heard by calling Dave Lewis’ office at 201-567-8000. (Please note that offices are only open Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. ET.)
Sample e-mail text is provided below to help you draft your message.
Stop Cruel Tea Experiments on Animals
I was shocked to learn that your company, which makes Lipton tea, experiments on animals simply to make health claims about its tea products and ingredients. In the experiments, piglets were infected with E. coli and had their intestines cut apart while the animals were still alive; rats were fed a high-sugar diet, causing them to develop brain damage; and rabbits were fed a cholesterol-laden diet, causing them to develop hardened arteries, and then had their heads cut off.
U.S. and international regulators do not require the makers of food and beverages to conduct tests on animals.
The makers of Honest Tea, Twinings, Stash Tea, Luzianne Tea, and other companies have all sent in written confirmation that they do not test their teas or ingredients on animals.
Please stop these cruel and outdated tests and institute a policy against conducting and funding tea tests on animals. I won’t buy Lipton tea products—and will only support tea brands that don’t test on animals—until your company stops testing tea and tea ingredients on animals.