International fashion house Gucci has pledged to go fur free in 2018. While Fur Europe cherishes freedom of choice as an important fabric of society, we are sorry to ascertain that Gucci has made an uninformed decision in order to “do better for the environment and animals”.
The European fur sector has played an active and developmental role in Europe’s circular bio-economy for more than 20 years. Fur animals are fed with waste products from the human food production. The animals are used 100%, and the carcasses utilised in the production of green energy, bio diesel and various other bio products. Manure from fur farms works as natural fertiliser or is processed at industry-owned biogas plants, supplying rural communities with renewable energy.
In order to reach global sustainability targets, there is a pressing need to transform the way fashion is made. With water, mineral oil and fertile soil being a limited and dwindling resource, natural, renewable fibres, such as fur, are essential and the sustainable alternative to synthetic, non-renewable textiles.
Since August this year independent researchers have been working on a science-based methodology to map the environmental footprint of the fur sector with the aim to analyse and improve our environmental performance. In spite of the many existing environmental credentials the fur sector possesses, Fur Europe strives to do even better for the environment. However, the policies we implement are always based on factual circumstances.
As a part of the new, science-based environmental footprint project, fur will be benchmarked against other textiles. When these results become available designers will recognise the sustainability features of natural fur with ease.
Circular Fashion is the name of Fur Europe’s 5-year sustainability strategy adopted in 2017. You can follow it here.
Gucci has taken their decision on advise of animal lobby group Fur Free Alliance. Behind the name implying a single-issue cause, the national members of the coalition is devoted to the rather radical ideology that humans should withstand from using animal products for any human beneficial purposes. This, of course, also includes design materials such as silk, leather, reptile skins and wool.
By promoting non-renewable, plastic-based fur as the “ethical” alternative to natural fur, Fur Free Alliance actively contributes to the increasing problem of plastic particles in oceans and waterways. In effect, the “ethical” alternative to natural fur is not only an ecological disaster, it also inflicts pain, disease and death on the very beings Fur Free Alliance claims to protect.