LONDON—On the day that iconic British brand Burberry announces it’s going fur-free, a global campaign has been launched ahead of Fashion Week in New York, London, Paris and Milan urging fashion house Prada to adopt a fur-free policy. The campaign headed by animal charity Humane Society International, its American affiliate the Humane Society of the United States, international coalition the Fur-Free Alliance, and with help from Care2, will see compassionate citizens targeting Prada’s phone lines, email and social media urging the design house to drop fur because it is cruel, out-dated and has no place in a modern society.
Prada, which has a number of stores and outlets in the UK across London, Manchester and Glasgow, is a major fur user and its current range includes items made of fox and mink fur. Fur products include a fox fur jacket for £4,550, a mink fur jacket for £7,880, and a full-length fox fur coat for £10,700.
Prada’s use of fur is increasingly out of mode; in the last year alone major fashion-houses Gucci, Versace, Michael Kors, DKNY, Donna Karan and Jimmy Choo have gone fur-free. Many other global designers such as Hugo Boss, Armani, Tommy Hilfiger, Stella McCartney and Vivienne Westwood have long-standing fur bans.
HSI/UK Executive Director Claire Bass said “Brands like Prada that continue to sell animal fur are becoming increasingly isolated as top designers drop fur cruelty from their collections, knowing that the vast majority of consumers find it obscene and obsolete. Prada has a clear choice to make as to whether it wants to be an apologist for the vile fur trade or to move with the times and strike a pose for compassionate fashion. We hope it makes the ethical choice to go fur-free, joining more than 900 brands that have joined the Fur Free Retailer programme globally. It’s never been clearer that fur’s days are numbered, and with our #FurFreeBritain campaign we’re urging the government to blaze a trail as the world’s first fur-free country.”
HSI’s #FurFreeBritain campaign calls on the government to make the UK a fur-free zone by extending existing cat, dog and seal fur bans to cover all fur-bearing species. Although fur farming was outlawed in the UK on moral grounds in 2000, and EU regulations ban fur from domestic cats, dogs and from commercial seal hunts, Britain still imports and sells fur from a range of other species such as fox, rabbit, mink, coyote, raccoon dog and chinchilla. According to the most recent trade statistics from HMRC, in the last year*, the UK imported almost £75 million of animal fur (£74,154,873). A UK fur sales ban would follow on from fur import or sale bans in India, Sao Paolo in Brazil, and San Francisco, West Hollywood and Berkley in the United States. Los Angeles is currently also considering an animal fur sales ban.
The #FurFreeBritain campaign has received significant political support, including a landmark Westminster Hall debate in June at which MPs of all political parties spoke passionately in favour of banning fur imports from the United Kingdom. A recent parliamentary report by the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs Select Committee also called on the government to launch a public consultation on banning fur sales in the UK.
Public and celebrity backing for #FurFreeBritain is also growing. A 2018 YouGov poll commissioned by HSI/UK shows that more than two-thirds of the British public support a UK fur import ban, and earlier this year 31 of Britain’s biggest stars, including Dame Judi Dench and Sir Andy Murray, wrote to UK Prime Minister Theresa May in support of a #FurFreeBritain. The full letter can be seen here.
Prada’s UK Headquarters can be contacted about their use of fur on +44 (0) 20 7399 2030, via email through our petition and Care2 or on social media: Twitter https://twitter.com/PRADA, Facebook https://www.facebook.com/PRADA and Instagram https://www.instagram.com/prada
HSI President and Acting President of the Humane Society of the United States Kitty Block writes about our Prada campaign on her blog here.
*April 2017–March 2018 inclusive
- More than 130 million animals suffer each year in the global fur trade, the majority reared in terrible conditions on fur farms. This number does not include rabbits, whose numbers (in the hundreds of millions) are not reported by the fur trade.
- Around the world in countries such as the U.S., France, Poland and China, wild species are kept in small, barren battery cages for their entire lives before being killed by gassing or electrocution.
- Wild animals such as coyotes fair no better—they can languish in agony in cruel traps for hours or even days before dying from dehydration, starvation or attacks by predators, or being shot or crushed to death when the trapper returns.
- There is no legal requirement in the UK to use the specific word “fur” on items containing real fur. EU regulations require items defined as “textile products” that contain animal fur to carry the confusing wording “contains non-textile parts of animal origin” however this does not clearly tell consumers that it means “real animal fur,” and in practice this wording is rarely adhered to at all, as evidenced in our report “Mislabelled and misleading”. Products sold online are exempt from the above confusing wording requirement, and footwear or non-garment accessories such as handbags and keychains are also excluded.
- The Fur Free Retailer programme (furfreeretailer.com) is managed by the Fur Free Alliance. It provides support and information to designers and retailers adopting fur-free policies, and it provides consumers a list of fur-free shopping options.
Media Contact: Wendy Higgins, firstname.lastname@example.org, +44 (0)7989 972 423