British Fashion Council Finally Bans Fur!

Posted by on December 22, 2023 | Permalink

It has taken a long time, but by banning fur from the runway, the British Fashion Council now fully recognises that fur belongs to the animals who are born in it.

PETA sincerely thanks its 100,000 supporters who called for the ban and the inspirational activists who stood their ground outside London Fashion Week to protest against fur at the event.

Almost none of today’s designers want to support an industry that electrocutes, poisons, gases, and skins sentient animals; pollutes the environment; and exposes workers to toxic chemicals, and this is why the London catwalk has been fur-free for years.

As London Fashion Week continues to evolve, PETA encourages the removal of all wild animal skins, leather, and feathers – as other fashion events have already done – because no animal willingly gives up their body parts or life for a garment.

Fur Is Dead

Minks are confined for their entire lives to cramped cages before they’re killed for their fur. Investigations into 26 mink fur factory farms in Denmark revealed sick, injured, and dead animals at every operation. Some minks suffered from extensive untreated bite wounds, and others were missing legs or ears as a result of fights, which inevitably break out when these naturally solitary animals are forced to live together in crowded conditions.

Oikeutta eläimille / We Animals Media

In recent years, the practice of fur farming has come under intense scrutiny worldwide, leading to its outright ban in numerous countries including; Austria, Croatia, Czech Republic, Slovenia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Luxembourg, Serbia, Italy, France, North Macedonia, the Netherlands and the UK . Alongside countries such as China and Poland, Finland continues to allow fur farming, despite concerns raised by animal rights advocates and alarming health incidents in the past.
Two years ago, outbreaks of COVID-19 on mink farms shook the fur farming industry globally. This highlighted the inherent risks of keeping large numbers of animals in small cages next to each other. In many countries, the outbreaks and virus mutations born on the farms lead to culling of mink to contain the virus, including the mass culling of 17 million mink in Denmark. Finland managed to avoid such an outbreak through an extensive vaccination program.
Unfortunately, as Finland breathed a sigh of relief regarding the COVID-19 threat, another serious health concern emerged – highly pathogenic avian influenza (H5N1). This disease began spreading on farms across the country, causing further concerns for public health and animal welfare. In the midst of the rapidly spreading epidemic, a small team embarked on a mission to document the reality on the ground and uncover practices shrouded in secrecy. This collection of images includes photos taken on a number of Finnish fur farms during the summer of 2023. The photos highlight the lack of biosecurity on farms, dead and cannibalized animals left in small, barren cages and the immense suffering these animals endure.
These efforts led to a colossal fur farm where a chilling scene awaited – the culling of fox cubs in mass numbers. This disturbing discovery shed light on the often overlooked cruelties of the fur industry as well as the collateral damage caused to wild birds. While the photojournalists followed strict biosecurity measures such as wearing single-use protective clothing and masks to prevent the spread of H5N1, the farm workers were not so diligent, wearing masks on their chin while feeding animals and having open protective clothing and no masks when working in close proximity to cages.

The Fur Industry Is Killing the Planet

Fur is treated with chemicals such as formaldehyde and chromium to prevent it from rotting, making it one of the most polluting materials in fashion. An independent study found that compared to other materials, fur has a higher environmental impact regarding 17 out of the 18 factors tested, including its contribution to the climate catastrophe and toxic emissions.

The Future of Fashion Is Vegan

Copenhagen Fashion Week has already banned fur, and several other events have extended their fur ban to include other cruelly obtained materials – the organisers of Helsinki Fashion Week have banned leather, and Melbourne Fashion Week now prohibits wild bird feathers.

Progressive brands – such as Ganni and Balenciaga – are paving the way for cruelty-free fashion by introducing innovative vegan materials like Ohoskin and vegan leather into their clothing lines.

There is an abundance of innovative vegan textiles available, and there is no excuse for torturing animals for their skin.

Urge the British Fashion Council to Go Cruelty-Free

While the council has taken a positive step forward, it must sprint in order to catch up with the progress being made by others in the fashion industry.

Please urge London Fashion Week organisers to also implement a ban on exotic skins, leather, feathers, and other animal-derived materials: