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July 25, 2020 - Nikkei Asian Review

Thailand's coconut-picking monkeys trigger ethics debate

Thailand's coconut-picking monkeys trigger ethics debate
Monkey enslaved to pick coconuts Credit: PETA Asia

Thailand's coconut industry finds itself in an unwelcome spotlight over complaints that food processors are using fruit harvested by tethered monkeys.

In a YouTube video that has gone viral, monkeys are shown chained to poles in dirty surroundings and left in small cages in the rain. The video, which was made by People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals and published July 2, claims that most coconut products from Thailand contain fruit picked by "enslaved" monkeys. One clip uploaded by a PETA branch had more than 187,000 views as of noon Thursday.

The animal rights group said the monkeys are "treated like coconut-picking machines," as they are forced to climb up and down trees to collect up to 1,000 coconuts a day. In a statement published on its website, PETA said the monkeys are abducted from their families and social groups as babies.

View YouTube video.

Read more at Nikkei Asian Review

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