Chanel last night wrote fashion history: 'No More Croco for Coco' was the motto on the eve of the fashion house's presentation of its 'Métiers d'art' collection at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York.
In an interview, Bruno Pavlovsky, President of Fashion at Chanel, announced that the company would stop using fur and exotic skins such as crocodile leather. International animal welfare organisation FOUR PAWS welcomes this as a huge milestone.
"Chanel is really taking a big step here. More and more luxury fashion houses refuse to use fur in their collections. The fact that Chanel additionally bans exotic skins, especially crocodile leather, is a reason to celebrate."
Thomas Pietsch, FOUR PAWS wildlife expert
"Pavlovsky explained that it is becoming increasingly difficult to source skins and leathers that meet Chanel's ethical and qualitative standards. In future research and development, Chanel will therefore concentrate on textiles and leathers which are by-products of the food industry. This means that no more animals have to be killed especially for fashion – which, of course, we as an animal welfare organisation very much welcome,” said Pietsch.
He added: “Chanel’s announcement shows that ethical consumption and animal welfare have also gained in importance for luxury fashion labels. Instead of real fur or exotic skins, today’s consumers want sustainability and innovation. We are confident that this forward-thinking decision by Chanel will be imitated by other leading high fashion companies.”
In Australia, crocodile farming is legal and permits wild crocodile eggs to be taken from nests to commercial facilities. Farmed crocodiles are usually slaughtered between two and three years of age, when their belly skin measures at least 35 centimetres, shockingly less than their natural life span of 70 years.
A few months ago, Gucci became part of the international Fur Free Retailer program which has already been signed by 950 retailers worldwide.
“As the Australian representative of the Fur Free Program in Australia, we are encouraged at the leadership shown by brands both here and in global markets to move towards ethical fashion supply chains, and away from animal cruelty.”
Jeroen van Kernebeek, FOUR PAWS Australia Country Director
Many other leading fashion brands and retailers have already joined the Fur Free Retailer initiative, including H&M, Zara, Esprit, Armani and many more.
Every year, more than 100 million animals are killed by the fur industry. Minks, foxes and tanuki suffer on fur farms in tiny cages, while other species die a cruel death in traps.
Processing fur into fur fashion requires high quantities of hazardous chemicals and high energy consumption. FOUR PAWS is committed to a long-term ban on the keeping and killing of animals for fur and to end the use of real fur in the fashion industry.
FOUR PAWS is the global animal welfare organisation for animals under direct human influence, which reveals suffering, rescues animals in need and protects them.
Founded in 1988 in Vienna by Heli Dungler, the organisation advocates for a world where humans treat animals with respect, empathy and understanding. FOUR PAWS’ sustainable campaigns and projects focus on companion animals including stray dogs and cats, animals in fashion, and wild animals – such as bears, big cats, orangutans and elephants – kept in inappropriate conditions as well as in disaster and conflict zones.
With offices in Australia, Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Germany, Kosovo, the Netherlands, Switzerland, South Africa, Thailand, Ukraine, Hungary, the UK, the USA and Vietnam as well as sanctuaries for rescued animals in 12 countries, FOUR PAWS provides rapid help and long-term solutions. www.four-paws.org.au