While most filler materials used in such enhancements are synthetic, the popular filler Dermavisc, made by Swedish company Bohus Biotech, is made by extracting hyaluronic acid from the red cockscomb.
According to the SR report, this occurs even though it is forbidden within the EU to test cosmetics and hygiene products on animals. However, there is no ban currently on making products from animals.
Jens Holm, Left Party MP, was in the EU Parliament when the ban on cosmetic animal testing was passed, and was incensed to hear about Swedish roosters’ plight.
“I was extremely upset, but I was also surprised, because I thought the general development was towards trying to use less animals in tests, and less animal products overall. I thought technology was developing, helping us find synthetic options and other alternatives,” said Holm to SR’s reporter.
“We politicians simply must put a stop to this,” he continued.
According to the SR report, the roosters have been specially bred to have as large a comb as possible, which means they also are containing as much hyaluronic acid as possible.
“The roosters are white, and have large red combs. Combs which are so big that some hang down over the roosters’ eyes,” wrote SR reporter Sofia Boo.
Roosters are taken to the slaughterhouse at 28 weeks of age, where the desired comb is chopped off.
No one is interested in the body, according to SR. Therefore it is minced and turned into feed for Danish mink farms, biogas or manure.
Daniel Ogbonnaya, CEO of Bohus Biotech, doesn’t understand the criticism.
“We eat roosters too, and we farm salmon to eat, so I don’t see the difference,” he said to SR.
The Swedish Board of Agriculture (Jordbruksverket) are responsible for animal protection in Sweden. Despite that, they were unaware of the use of cockscombs in lip fillers, according to SR.