A few years back I wrote about climate and how the lives of the Inuit had to change as a result. They have been major users of animal skins since they first arrived after generations of travel from Africa, as nomads, in the coldest of landscapes, thousands of years ago.
But now, the Fast Fashion Industry still uses animal skins, not for essential use, but for fleeting wearability. Wherever cattle can be bred, not just for excessive meat eating but for their skins, the land is cleared to make way for such procurement, even if Rainforests are destroyed and with it essential habitat for flora and fauna. Around the world exotic creatures are increasingly farmed under cruel conditions to feed the Fast Fashion Industry.
A simple search on the Internet will soon bring up pitiful images of human cruelty to animals to meet the supply demand of the Fashion Industry:
The Arctic Fox:
Headline in Daily Mail: “
The pitiful Arctic foxes that shame the fashion world: Beautiful creatures are cramped in tiny cages and deliberately bloated to produce two million fur pelts for Britain each year
- While the UK banned fur farming 15 years ago, shoppers are still able to buy imported pelts
- Over the past five years more than £2.5 million of fur items have been imported into the UK from Finland
Without the demand from thoughtless shoppers, this trade would not exist.
The short miserable lives of animals raised/ranched for their fur are finally ended when they are killed by gas, strangulation, neck breaking or anal electrocution. Read more, here.
In a world where fur is becoming increasingly déclassé because of repeated campaigns by animal rights activists — with luxury houses like Gucci, Armani, Michael Kors and Versace recently pledging to ban fur altogether — is the use of feathers any more ethical? According to Ashley Byrne, associate director of campaigns at PETA, the answer is an emphatic no. “It’s unnecessary and it’s cruel, and it’s not ethical,” she asserts.
The ten most endangered animals used by the Fashion Industry are described in full here. These animals suffer terribly because the profits are high at the top end of the luxury fashion market.
The list tells us of:
Crocodilians comprise a vast number of large reptile species, including crocodiles, alligators, caiman, and gharials around the world. Australia is one of the worst countries producing crocodile skins for the luxury market. “The high-end French fashion brand Hermès wants to build one of Australia’s biggest crocodile farms in the Northern Territory that would hold up to 50,000 saltwater crocodiles to be turned into luxury goods such as handbags and shoes.”
As extinction progresses and increasingly rare animals are cruelly farmed, people are becoming aware of the hostile environment for the diversity of animals we have been exploiting for centuries in increasingly fast fashion trading processes. It does not make sense to wear garments briefly then send them to landfill. It does make sense to consider where the items we purchase come from and if animal cruelty was involved, or were animals even necessary in the making of our clothes?