‘Hermès Stinks of Death’: PETA France Activists Thrown Out After Releasing Stink Bomb in Paris Boutique

The Action Is Part of the Group’s Campaign Urging Hermès to Stop Selling Items Made From Exotic Skins

Paris – French fashion giant Hermès was dealt a nauseating blow today: while customers queued in front of the brand’s Paris boutique in the run-up to Christmas, PETA activists released a foul-smelling spray in the store. One of the activists wore a T-shirt saying, “Hermès Stinks of Death” and held up a sign reading “Hermès: Stop Exotic Skins” while speaking loudly about the torture animals are subjected to for their skins to end up as fashion accessories.

Photos of the action are available here. Photo credit: Thomas Saidi. 

More photos are available here. Photo credit: Vakita/Marie Lecoq.

Videos are available here.

“All of Hermès’ marketing know-how consists of ensuring that the power of the brand makes customers forget the animal origin of the bag,” declared a brand executive quoted in a 2022 article by French media outlet ChallengesBut PETA’s action encourages consumers to make the connection between Hermès’ products and the bloody corpses from which they are made. 

“It is high time Hermès stopped turning its nose up at animal rights – an issue of major importance to today’s consumers, who reject industries that confine and torture animals,” says PETA Vice President for Europe Mimi Bekhechi. “We urge the company to turn its back on these archaic and cruel materials, which stink of death.”

A shocking investigation into intensive farms belonging to Hermès by the Australian association Kindness Project revealed that crocodiles were confined to cramped cages or small concrete pits pilled with filthy water before being subjected to electric shocks, dragged, and violently slaughtered. PETA also released video footage revealing that Hermès suppliers in Texas and Zimbabwe confined tens of thousands of crocodiles to barren concrete pits. Alligators were cut up and butchered while they were still conscious, and some were still moving as they slowly bled to death.

PETA notes that it takes the skins of three crocodiles to make a single Hermès Birkin bag. Furthermore, wildlife experts have warned that the use of animal skins – such as that of crocodiles – by the fashion industry increases the risk of dangerous viruses spreading to humans. Luxury brands that have banned exotic skins include Burberry, Chanel, HUGO BOSS, and Mulberry.

PETA – whose motto reads, in part, that “animals are not ours to wear” – opposes speciesism, a human-supremacist worldview. For more information, please visit PETA.org.uk or follow the group on Facebook, X (formerly Twitter), TikTok, or Instagram.


Sascha Camilli +44 (0) 20 7923 6244; [email protected]