Following years of urging by PETA UK – and as conservation experts warn that the trade in exotic skins risks fuelling the spread of diseases like COVID-19 – luxury fashion brand Mulberry has confirmed a ban on exotic skins in all its future collections.
The spring/summer 2020 season marks the brand’s first-ever departure from using the skins of alligators, crocodiles, ostriches, lizards, or snakes in its designs. Mulberry already has a fur-free policy.
“[W]e have spent a lot of time determining and then continually reviewing our sustainability metrics and targets …. At an early stage of this process we decided not to use exotics in our collections and this remains our position.”
– Rosie Wollacott, Group Sustainability Manager, Mulberry
Exotic Skins and COVID-19
The COVID-19 outbreak is believed to have originated in a Chinese market where wild and exotic animals, both alive and dead, were sold for human consumption. The intensive farming of exotic animals for both their flesh and their skin poses a similar risk of animal-to-human transmission of newly evolved viruses. Exotic-animal farms are breeding grounds for pathogens and increase the risk of future pandemics.
Cruelty Behind Exotic Skin Handbags
Behind every handbag or wallet made with exotic skins is an animal who suffered tremendously. PETA and our affiliates have released several exposés of the exotic skins industry.
Alligators are kept in fetid water inside dank, dark sheds before their necks are hacked open and metal rods are shoved into their heads in an attempt to scramble their brains, often while they’re fully conscious.
One-year-old ostriches are transported by lorry to abattoirs, where workers turn them upside down in a stunner, slit their throats, and rip their feathers out. And snakes are commonly nailed to trees before their bodies are cut open from one end to the other as they’re skinned alive.
Help PETA Secure More Victories for Animals
Mulberry’s decision to ban these cruelly obtained materials is a sign of the times. The British luxury brand joins Chanel, Diane von Furstenberg, Paul Smith, Victoria Beckham, Vivienne Westwood, and others in making the compassionate decision to ban exotic skins from all its designs.
Join PETA in calling on LVMH, which owns Louis Vuitton, to stop selling items made with exotic skins and fur, too.