It Looks Like Fur Is Toxic as Well as Cruel
As if you needed another reason to avoid fur, a new study conducted in Germany has found large quantities of carcinogenic substances in the fur linings of some children’s jackets.
The researchers, who worked with Dutch anti-fur campaign Bont voor Dieren, examined fur from racoon dogs and coyotes lining six jackets made by Canada Goose, Versano, Woolrich, Nickelson and Airforce. Their findings were disturbing.
Five out of the six jackets tested contained substances such as formaldehyde – a carcinogen – and ethoxylates, which are known to disrupt hormone production, at levels well above those deemed to be safe. These chemicals can be absorbed through the skin and may remain in the body for years. Children are more vulnerable to their effects than adults, since their immune systems are not fully developed.
In fur production, heavy-duty chemicals have to be used to stop skins – which are, after all, part of a carcass – from decomposing. Toxic substances may also be used in the dying process.
It’s deeply troubling that items intended for children are apparently laced with these toxic chemicals. But there’s no excuse for parents to buy their children items made from real fur in the first place. Animals on fur farms are kept in cramped and often filthy wire cages for their entire lives before being crudely gassed, electrocuted or bludgeoned to death.
Fur is bad for the environment, too. Another study found that the environmental impact of mink fur is five times higher than that of textiles. All in all, it’s clear that the fur industry is unethical on every level.
Please speak out if you see fur for sale by asking to have a quick word with the store manager. And if you spot people wearing fur, politely explain to them that they’re supporting extreme cruelty to animals.