For Immediate Release:
April 20, 2022
Moira Colley 202-483-7382
Paris – “When will Hermès take seriously its need to evolve to stay relevant by using only sustainable, luxurious vegan materials that don’t involve the torture and slaughter of exotic animals?” That’s the question Hermès heard from PETA at its annual meeting today, a question Louis Vuitton owner LVMH and Gucci owner Kering will also face in the coming days as the group urges top fashion houses to drop exotic skins from their collections. To show executives the future of fashion, a PETA representative also paraded a mango-leather “exotic-skins” purse around the meeting room as a fabulous example of the stylish, animal-friendly alternatives already available.
“Behind every snakeskin Louis Vuitton bag or lizard-skin Gucci watchband is a sensitive reptile who endured a horrific death,” says PETA Executive Vice President Tracy Reiman. “Today’s shoppers care about animal rights and sustainability, and PETA is calling on designers to get with the times and stop the gruesome slaughter of exotic animals for fashion.”
A recent survey by Glamour magazine found that approximately 73% of Gen Zers identify as animal rights activists—yet Hermès, LVMH, and Kering continue to use exotic skins in their designs. Last year, PETA Asia investigations exposed workers at a slaughterhouse supplying Gucci hacking away at still-conscious lizards up to 14 times before decapitating the animals and revealed workers at two slaughterhouses that supply LVMH beating snakes with hammers and skinning them—likely while they were still conscious. And in 2021, video footage was released showing crocodiles on Hermès-owned farms in Australia being electrocuted, knifed, shot, and mutilated with screwdrivers.
During PETA’s Week of Action, from April 20 to 28, posters by street artist Praxis showing the exotic-skins industries’ victims are being displayed near the New York City stores of all three brands and more than 100 PETA supporters and activists will march outside the Louis Vuitton and Gucci stores in Manhattan this weekend.
In a nod to Millennial and Gen Z tastes, hundreds of top designers and retailers have dropped fur, including Burberry, Prada, Chanel, Donna Karan, Michael Kors, Versace, and Saks Fifth Avenue. Now PETA is calling for the same forward-thinking step from the purveyors of exotic skins.
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.