Bananas Monkey Exhibitor Cited After Bizarre 2020 Influencer Stunt – WWD

A 2020 publicity stunt involving monkeys and main social media stars is being resurfaced.

Final November, a clothes model referred to as Bananas Monkey despatched a monkey exhibitor to the properties of Los Angeles-based influencers akin to Jeffree Star, James Charles, Chantel Jeffries and Daisy Keech. (Bananas Monkey is owned by an organization referred to as Blue Chook, which additionally owns Talentless, Scott Disick’s sweatpants and loungewear model, in keeping with a consultant for Talentless.)

The exhibitor introduced a baboon and a capuchin monkey for influencers to make use of as props for social media promotion of Bananas Monkey’s launch. Unsurprisingly, the incident prompted a lot on-line backlash, with social media customers expressing upset over the therapy of the monkeys. Some had been notably ruffled about Star’s involvement, as his firm, Jeffree Star Cosmetics, claims to be cruelty-free.

PETA notified the U.S. Division of Agriculture of the incident final yr, citing “obvious violations of the Animal Welfare Act” in an electronic mail. The USDA proceeded to conduct an inspection in March. Within the inspection report, a duplicate of which PETA shared with WWD, the USDA discovered that the monkey exhibitor, Kevin Keith, “didn’t adequately keep direct management of the animals whereas they interacted with the general public.”

“The animals had been noticed to be in bodily contact with the general public — shaking arms within the case of the baboon, and sitting on shoulders within the case of the capuchin — and the exhibitor didn’t have a maintain of the animals, nor was he holding onto the top of their leashes throughout these encounters,” the report reads. “Failure to keep up direct management of nonhuman primates throughout bodily contact with members of the general public may lead to bodily hurt to the individuals or animals concerned.”

In an announcement, PETA Basis’s affiliate director of captive animal regulation enforcement Debbie Metzler urged influencers “to make use of their platforms to sentence animal exploitation, not allow it.”

“Monkeys utilized by exhibitors like Keith are taken from their moms, carted round, coerced to carry out and compelled into one anxious encounter after one other,” Metzler stated.

WWD reached out to representatives for Star, Charles, Jeffries and Keech for remark, although none supplied remark by press time.


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