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November 6, 2017

LUSH Cosmetics and HSI join forces to fight fur cruelty with eye-catching lenticular window campaign

Lush windows across the country show a fur-wearing model morph into a fox to raise awareness about real fur mislabelled as faux fur

Humane Society International/UK

  • #WhatTheFur exhibit inside a Lush Cosmetics store in the UK. HSI/UK

Humane Society International UK and Lush have launched an eye-catching nationwide #WhatTheFur?! campaign across all 103 Lush stores in the United Kingdom to make shoppers aware they could be misled into buying real fur falsely labelled as fake fur.

Lush shop front windows are famous for bringing social justice issues to the high street, and this latest ambitious campaign with HSI uses lenticular technology in which a woman wearing a fur bobble hat cleverly morphs into a fox on a fur farm, to underline the growing problem of real animal fur being mislabelled as faux fur, duping shoppers into buying cruel fur they might otherwise actively avoid. Both the fur trimmed hat and the fox are shown sporting the same “100% acrylic” label attached to their fur to show that labels can lie. The joint campaign is continued in store and online where customers can pick up or download a free wallet-sized guide to help tell the difference between real and faux fur, and sign HSI’s #FurFreeBritain petition calling for a ban on fur imports.

HSI UK is calling on the government to enact a fur labelling regulation so that consumers can avoid fur products they object to ethically. HSI believes that ultimately it is not enough simply to label cruel fur products, and a UK ban on the import and sale of fur is needed to bring the market place in line with public opinion.

Former Made In Chelsea star and vegan lifestyle influencer Lucy Watson, Cosmopolitan UK's Senior Fashion Editor Sairey Stemp, and wildlife TV presenter Anneka Svenska joined HSI and Lush to launch the campaign at an event party at Lush’s Soho Studio. Guests were challenged to spot mislabelled fur items before watching the UK premiere screening of documentary-short film Klatki that exposes the cruelty of a Polish fur farm. 

Claire Bass, executive director of Humane Society International UK said: “British consumers will be shocked to learn that they are being duped into buying real animal fur. Partnering with Lush gives us a unique opportunity to reach shoppers across the country who are unaware that trusted brands and independent retailers alike can be caught out selling real animal fur at deceptively cheap prices, described as “faux” or “100% acrylic”. As an urgent first step we’re calling on the government to introduce mandatory, clear labelling of all animal fur in order to protect both animals and consumers, but ultimately the government must use Brexit as an opportunity to close UK borders to the cruel, outdated and unnecessary fur trade.”

Make Britain fur-free!

Hilary Jones, Lush ethics director said, “We know from our own experience that what customers want from companies is cruelty free products, transparency and honesty. The public think that, because of public pressure, fur was banished from UK high streets decades ago. They will not thank brands that are either mistakenly or negligently putting real fur onto their customers. It is time for everyone in the supply chain to take responsibility, or customers will lose faith. We are happy to help Humane Society International in this important campaign, to help empower customers and to remind the government that current fur policy is neither consistent nor in line with public feeling.”

Fur facts:

  • Around the world in countries such as Denmark, France, Poland and China, animals on fur farms are subjected to terrible conditions. Fur farms keep animals in small, barren cages, physically and mentally deprived for their entire lives, before being killed and skinned for their fur. Wild animals such as coyotes fair no better, caught in agonising traps for hours or even days before being shot.
  • Although fur farming was outlawed in the UK on moral grounds in 2000, and EU regulations ban fur from domestic cats, dogs or commercial seal hunts, the UK still imports and sells fur from a range of other species such as fox, rabbit, mink, coyote, racoon dog and chinchilla.
  • HM Revenue and Customs statistics show that in 2016 the UK imported £39,867,668 of animal fur from EU countries, and £15,746,833 from the rest of the world, totalling £55,614,501 in imports. £30,068,653 of fur is reported as having been re-exported/dispatched, leaving a domestic market of £25,545,848.
  • A 2016 YouGov poll commissioned by HSI UK shows that the vast majority of the British public oppose fur, with 9 out of 10 Brits believing it unacceptable to buy and sell real fur, averaged across nine species.

Media contact: Harriet Barclay, HBarclay@hsi.org, 07794354596

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