Demand for ethical fashion is gaining global momentum. Shoppers and consumers, designers and retailers alike are making more ethically minded commitments on behalf of animals, demonstrating a global demand for animal-friendly practices in fashion.
High profile brands such as Chanel, Armani, Gucci and the Prada Group, have announced they will no longer use animal fur in designs or new products. Chanel and Victoria Beckham additionally committed to end the use of exotic skins, while other brands have pledged to use wool from lambs that were not mulesed.
To lead progressive change for animals used in fashion, FOUR PAWS’ offices in the United States and Australia have launched the Wear it Kind Campaign by asking people to pressure brands to phase out mulesing. Mulesing is the removal of wool-bearing skin from the hindquarters of the sheep to prevent fly bites. Due to the suffering caused by this procedure, mulesing is banned in New Zealand, however, it is still legally performed on most sheep in Australia.
A 2019 YouGov opinion poll revealed that 53% of Americans are aware of animal cruelty issues in the fashion industry. The YouGov poll was commissioned by the U.S. and Australian offices of FOUR PAWS International.
The survey of over 1,200 Americans found that for people who are aware of animal cruelty issues in the fashion industry, 87% are concerned about the welfare and treatment of animals in at least one area of the industry.
With over 74 million sheep, Australia is the largest producer of wool used for clothing worldwide. Although there is wool produced in the U.S. as well, most wool used in clothing (approximately 88%) is imported, making the act of mulesing an issue that American consumers should be concerned about.
In fact, the U.S. is considered one of the 8th major wool consuming countries in the world, with one of the largest retail markets for wool.
“Wear it Kind includes a significant outreach and education effort directly to brands, hopefully compelling them towards prioritizing transparency on animal welfare issues in their supply chains. Wear it Kind will be a resource for everyone on everything from wool and feathers, to exotic skins and leather,” explained Claire LaFrance, Head of Communications for the FOUR PAWS’ Boston office, in a statement.
In addition to asking people to Wear it Kind, this year FOUR PAWS helped to review the renewed Good On You scoring system for animal welfare. Good On You has an easy-to-use app that, through a unique rating system, gives the user fashion brand ratings, fashion news, tips and advice all in one place making it easy for the everyday shopper to make ethical fashion purchases that are better for animals, people and the planet.
“Shoppers are increasingly seeking ethical fashion options, and it’s clear that animal welfare is a key concern. Issues like mulesing and fur farming continue to be top of mind for many people,” said Gordon Renouff, Co-Founder at Good On You.
Animal protection is becoming a critical component of ethical fashion, and it is easier, by the day, for people to embrace top quality fabrics and production techniques that aren’t cruel to animals.
The Wear it Kind Campaign builds upon FOUR PAWS’ 30-year history working to improve animal welfare within the textiles industry. People can find more information on the campaign at WearItKind.org
FOUR PAWS is also calling on people to sign a petition encouraging brands to phase out sales of mulesed sheep wool and to take responsibility for the animals within their supply chains. SIGN HERE!
You can help all animals by choosing compassion on your plate. #GoVeg