France’s Kering Group has announced that it will ditch animal furs in all its collections. The company joins a growing list of luxury fashion houses to respond to customer demands for ethical and sustainable clothing and accessories.
Kering’s star label Gucci announced it would forego fur four years ago and since then, a number of other fashion houses followed suit, including Italy’s Prada, Burberry, and Canada Goose which was lambasted for using coyote fur.
Within the group, Balenciaga, Bottega Veneta, Alexander McQueen, Brioni and Saint Laurent have phased out fur in recent years, but now, the company-wide ban will not allow the use of fur in the future, even if there is a change in creative direction.
“The time has now come to take a further step forward by ending the use of fur in all our collections. The world has changed, along with our clients, and luxury naturally needs to adapt to that,” François-Henri Pinault, Chairman and CEO of Kering, said.
While full fur coats have fallen out of fashion in more ways than one, it continues to be used as trimming, or in luxury handbags.
Images of mass cullings of coronavirus-infected mink in Denmark at the height of the pandemic created public outcry and the use of animal products in the fashion industry came under fire.
A global luxury group, Kering manages the development of a series of renowned Houses in Fashion, Leather Goods, Jewellery and Watches: Gucci, Saint Laurent, Bottega Veneta, Balenciaga, Alexander McQueen, Brioni, Boucheron, Pomellato, DoDo, Qeelin, Ulysse Nardin, Girard-Perregaux, as well as Kering Eyewear. In 2019, Kering formalized and published a set of animal welfare standards that will continue to be applied, as they concern other animal fibers and materials.
The foundation of actress Brigitte Bardot, created in 1986 and dedicated to animal protection, welcomed François-Henri Pinault’s decision and called on rival group’s “Bernard Arnault to commit the companies of the LVMH group to the same impetus of progress and respect for living beings, by banning animal fur in turn.”
While PETA is pleased that all of Kering’s brands have now officially joined their list of those that refuse to use animals who are bludgeoned, drowned, electrocuted, gassed, or skinned alive in the fur trade. other companies are still supporting this cruel industry.
Ahead of the game is Stella McCartney, who has shunned the use of all animal-based materials like fur and leather. With cruelty-free fashion becoming increasingly popular, business insiders believe that animal-free alternatives or “next gen” materials will soon be following a similar trajectory as the alt-protein industry, becoming a $2.2 billion market by 2026. That’s good news indeed.