Gucci, which stopped using fur last fall, is no longer using angora.
With its latest animal-friendly decision, Gucci joins other companies such as Calvin Klein, Ralph Lauren, Anthropologie, Asos, BCBG Max Azria and Gap that have banned fur and angora from their respective collections.
Gucci executives declined to comment Tuesday after PETA plugged the company’s angora-free policy. Gucci’s angora-free choice was believed to have been made late last year. In advance of World Environment Day, the luxury company launched Gucci Equilibrium at Equilibrium.gucci.com, a destination “designed to connect people, planet and purpose.”
PETA claims that Gucci is one of 330 brands that have gone angora-free. Gucci’s support could potentially further tip the scales, given the influence of creative director Alessandro Michele on the fashion industry. The Italian brand is more in line with the practices of its Kering stablemate Stella McCartney, who has long eschewed the use of fur and leather. A PETA spokeswoman said Tuesday that the group is urging Kering to ban angora across all its brands and for retailers like Nordstrom to follow suit.
To magnify its angora-free pitch to multiple fashion brands, PETA created an exposé on angora farms to highlight what it described as “the routine cruelty” toward rabbits in the cutting process. Ensuring animals’ well-being in sourcing can be challenging, according to some.
PETA claims that 90 percent of angora wool comes from China, “where there are no penalties for abuse of animals on farms and no standards to regulate the treatment of the animals. When you buy a sweater, hat or other product that contains angora, the angora wool most likely originated in China, even if the finished product was assembled elsewhere.”
Kitty Block, acting president and chief executive officer of the Humane Society of the U.S., said Tuesday, “When the Humane Society worked with Gucci to ban fur last year, we knew the positive promotion they’d receive would lead to additional animal protection policies. By banning angora, Gucci’s leadership again shows that luxury fashion brands can do well by doing good.”
Block took over after Wayne Pacelle exited the organization in February, amidst charges of alleged sexual misconduct.
On another front, just last week PETA persuaded Asos to ban mohair after another PETA video exposé conducted in South Africa detailed mistreatment. The online retailer, which sells more than 850 labels in addition to its own for apparel and accessories, also announced that it will ban cashmere, silk, down and feathers across its entire platform by the end of January 2019.
At the start of Milan Fashion Week in February, three PETA activists drew attention to the group’s anti-angora efforts by carrying signs while wearing giant rabbit masks and underwear. They wanted to remind showgoers “Rabbit Skin Is Not Yours” and “Rabbits Suffer for Fur and Angora.” The demonstration was a joint action between PETA and the animal rights group La Loro Voce — Iene Vegane.