For Immediate Release:
November 14, 2022
Robin Goist 202-483-7382
New York – At Tapestry Inc.’s annual meeting tomorrow, PETA—which owns stock in the multinational fashion holding company—will urge leadership to implement a ban on exotic skins across all of its brands, which include Coach, Kate Spade, and Stuart Weitzman. PETA will expose the blatant falsity of Tapestry’s claims to maintain high standards of animal welfare, pointing out that a PETA Asia investigation in Indonesia revealed workers bashing pythons over the head with a hammer and chopping conscious lizards’ heads off with machetes—all common cruelty in the exotic-skins supply chain.
“Behind every ostrich- or alligator-skin handbag is a sentient animal who endured a horrific death for corporate greed,” says PETA Executive Vice President Tracy Reiman. “PETA is calling on Tapestry Inc. to follow the lead of numerous top industry players and ban exotic skins or risk being on the wrong side of history and fashion trends.”
PETA entities have also documented that alligators’ necks are hacked open and metal rods are shoved into their heads, and snakes are pumped full of water to loosen their skin before it’s peeled off—often while they’re still conscious.
Nine out of 10 Gen Z consumers—who, together with millennials, boast $350 billion in spending power—say that companies should show an environmental and social consciousness in their business practices. Many companies—including Chanel, Burberry, and Stella McCartney—have banned exotic skins, and many more are meeting the growing demand for sustainable, animal-friendly products by offering vegan leather options made from pineapples, mushrooms, apples, cacti, and other plant-based materials.
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 or follow the group on Twitter, Facebook, or Instagram.
PETA’s shareholder question follows.
Tapestry claims to ensure care and respect for animals in its supply chain and to maintain high standards of welfare within the reptile-skin trade. However, this is impossible.
PETA entities have exposed the horrific cruelty inherent in exotic skins supply chains around the world through eight investigations in four countries on three continents. The story is always the same: grim confinement and a gruesome death.
Juvenile crocodiles are confined to dank pools and crowded concrete pits before workers cut into their necks, ram metal rods down their spines or into their brains while they’re still alive, and then peel off their skin.
Most recently, PETA Asia’s second investigation in Indonesia revealed workers bashing pythons over the head with a steel hammer, suspending and nailing them to a wooden bar, jamming hoses down their throats, pumping them full of water until they swelled to nearly double their size, and then slitting them open with a razor blade. Experts report that the animals were likely conscious and able to feel pain throughout the ordeal. At another facility, workers struck lizards in the head with machetes and hacked at their necks as many as 14 times before decapitating them. Due to lizards’ unique physiology, their brains were likely conscious for more than 30 minutes after they were beheaded.
While Burberry, Chanel, Hugo Boss, Jil Sander, Victoria Beckham, Stella McCartney, and many other designers and brands have turned their backs on this cruel industry, Tapestry continues to lag behind.
My question is this: When will Tapestry follow its own animal welfare policy and join its peers by ending its sale of exotic-animal skins?