Companies have been using animals to test products for a very long time, but in recent years, this practice has come under fire from consumers and animal advocate organizations alike. Back in 2021, PETA (People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals) criticized Ford for using pig cadavers to gather crash test data, which was used to help researchers gain a better understanding of the impact of crashes on small children. Now, Ford shareholders have voted against a measure proposed by PETA requesting that the automaker detail its animal testing processes via an annual report, according to the Detroit Free Press.
According to FoMoCo chair Bill Ford, the proposed measure was rejected by 95 percent of Ford shareholders in a preliminary count following the conclusion of the company’s recent virtual meeting. However, the automaker clarified that this vote has nothing to do with animal testing, but rather, additional reporting on that particular subject, adding that the company does not voluntarily engage in these types of activities.
“Ford has a well-established position on the underlying topic, which we’ve discussed with you before – we don’t use animals for safety testing or ask or fund others to do so – and we won’t unless it’s required by law or there isn’t an acceptable alternative for critical safety research,” said Ford spokesman T.R. Reid. “On the specific proposal, we don’t believe more reporting would provide meaningful insight or benefit. The company explained all of this in our proxy statement to shareholders.”
Regardless, PETA science advisor Frances Cheng had asked The Blue Oval to enact this measure, while the company’s rivals – Stellantis and General Motors – have seemingly taken a stronger stance on the topic. “Stellantis does not engage in any research using animals” and “GM does not conduct or commission the use of animals in tests for research purposes or in the development of our vehicles, either directly or indirectly and GM does not fund such tests,” Cheng said.
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