PETA U.K.’s Gift for Harry and Meghan’s Leather Anniversary? Vegan Sneakers

For Immediate Release:
May 19, 2021

Contact:
Moira Colley 202-483-7382

London – Two matching pairs of vegan Stan Smith sneakers from Adidas are en route from PETA U.K. to the Duke and Duchess of Sussex for their third wedding anniversary—traditionally known as the “leather” anniversary—on May 19. In addition to helping the power couple hit the ground running with their new endeavors, the gift offers an animal-friendly alternative to Meghan’s go-to casual shoes—and puts a modern spin on the dated gifting of leather items to mark a couple’s third year of marriage.

“We know how much you care about animals and the environment—unlike the leather industry, which kills over 1 billion animals every year and whose end product is ranked the most polluting material in fashion,” writes PETA President Ingrid Newkirk in an accompanying letter. “We therefore sought to mark your special day in a modern, eco-conscious, and animal-friendly way …. We hope you love the gift and that the shoes will inspire you to continue to embrace vegan fashion.”

A PETA video exposé of the world’s largest leather producer revealed that gentle calves were branded on the face and cows and bulls were electroshocked and beaten before being killed for their skin. Turning animal skins into leather requires the use of 130 different chemicals—including cyanide—and leather production releases massive amounts of the carbon emissions that contribute to climate change. The World Bank has reported that cattle ranching is responsible for over 80% of deforestation in the Amazon since 1970.

The shoes, a vegan version of the iconic Adidas Stan Smith design, feature a vegan upper and an outsole made with rubber waste. They are also made with Primegreen—a series of high-performance recycled materials—and are free from virgin polyester.

PETA—whose motto reads, in part, that “animals are not ours to wear”—opposes speciesism, the human-supremacist view that cows and other animals are nothing more than commodities. For more information, please visit PETA.org or follow the group on Twitter, Facebook, or Instagram.

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 Ingrid E. Newkirk

“Almost all of us grew up eating meat, wearing leather, and going to circuses and zoos. We never considered the impact of these actions on the animals involved. For whatever reason, you are now asking the question: Why should animals have rights?” READ MORE

— Ingrid E. Newkirk, PETA President and co-author of Animalkind