Olivia Charlton, Wildlife Campaign Manager at World Animal Protection has written a guest blog for Animal Friendly Life on wildlife-friendly fashion and why more companies need to catch up to community expectations.
As wildlife-friendly fashion continues to gain popularity, it’s no surprise that more brands in the industry are starting to take notice.
More people than ever are looking for cruelty-free and sustainable options when it comes to their clothing and accessories.
But it’s not just about catering to a trend.
According to the World Animal Protection report, ‘Cruelty is out of Fashion’, around 100 million wild animals are farmed and killed every year globally in the fur trade, mainly in the European Union and China.
What is wildlife-friendly fashion?
Wildlife-friendly fashion represents an important shift in the way we think about the clothes we wear and the impact they have on the world around us.
The traditional fashion industry relies heavily on the use of wild animal products, from fur to exotic skins and feathers.
While many people may not know about this, there is growing concern about the treatment of animals in the production process.
The current methods of obtaining wild animal products are cruel, inhumane and are causing unnecessary harm to animals.
The exotic skin industry in Australia has been criticised for its slaughter methods and the conditions Australian crocodiles are farmed in.
Moreover, the global fur industry has faced intense scrutiny for its inhumane practices, such as keeping animals in small, cramped cages, and using cruel methods to kill them.
This has led to many fashion brands and designers pledging to stop using fur in their products and to adopt alternative materials that are more animal-friendly.
Through wildlife-friendly fashion, designers and manufacturers are able to create clothing and accessories without causing harm to animals.
This means using alternative materials like plant-based fabrics and synthetics, as well as finding new ways to recycle and repurpose existing materials.
By doing so, we can create a fashion industry that is both stylish and compassionate.
Most recently, sportswear giant Nike ditched kangaroo leather for an innovative non-animal alternative in their iconic Tiempo football boots.
Designers turning to wildlife-friendly fashion choices
Nike’s announcement to switch from K-Leather to a non-animal alternative came a week after sporting giant Puma’s announcement of swapping K-Leather for the cruelty-free alternative K-Better in their football boots.
Both are massive wins for kangaroos.
Fortunately, there are already many innovative and forward-thinking designers and manufacturers who are embracing the vegan fashion movement.
According to World Animal Protection the wholesale market for more sustainable, animal-free materials will reach an approximate value of US 2.2 billion by 2026.
As more people become aware of the impact that animal products have on the environment and animal welfare, they will naturally seek out alternatives.
This means that the fashion industry needs to adapt if it wants to remain relevant and profitable.
Wildlife-friendly fashion is not just a passing trend – it represents a fundamental shift in the way we think about fashion and our impact on the world.
By embracing responsible, vegan fashion, the fashion industry can not only create beautiful and innovative designs but also help to create a more compassionate and sustainable future for us all.
In the Cruelty is out of Fashion report, Collective Fashion Justice and World Animal Protection explore the current state of the fashion industry’s use and promotion of clothing, shoes and accessories made from wild animals.
The report details the cruelty in the fur, exotic skins, and feathers production, exotic skins and feathers; disturbingly, fashion houses like Hermès and Louis Vuitton own some of the farms.
It highlights what major shows and designers are doing in banning wild animal exploitation and materials, moving towards more kind, sustainable and innovative alternatives.
“We urge runway event organisers, their sponsors and brands to read this report and adopt our recommendation to ban the use and abuse of wild animals and the clothing, shoes and accessories made from them,” the report states.
“A kinder, more humane, environmentally responsible and safe fashion industry is not only possible, but exciting, creative and – in the face of changing community attitudes – inevitable.”