Fashion consumers and producers have been under continuous pressure to stop using animal-derived materials on the grounds that those are hazardous to the environment and unsustainable. While the Consumer Choice Center values animal rights, animal welfare, and protection of the environment as such, this campaign also seeks to debunk some of the myths used by animal-rights groups to cloud the judgments of consumers.
Various certification programmes, as well as laws and regulations existing at all levels, ensure that the production of animal-derived materials adheres to environmental and sustainability standards and enhances animal welfare. It is in the best interest of these businesses to assure their customers that those standards are respected.
Many independent certification programmes have been launched to keep the animal-based production in check and make sure to single out the black sheep.
The animal-based goods sector supports millions of jobs around the world, including many indigenous populations, skilled craftspeople etc. Trade incentivises these indigenous and local communities that live with wildlife to undertake conservation. The use of animal-derived materials plays a vital role in fostering animal conservation.
More and more innovations already allow consumers to switch to animal-free food products and fashion items. At the same time, a trend of emotionally charged campaigns that misinform consumers about animal welfare in developed countries has been on the rise. With alternatives at hand, there is no reason to stigmatise against the use of real fur in fashion choice.
For instance, animal-rights groups, such as PETA, have been vocal in targeting brands using high-profile publicity stunts and in nudging consumers to stop buying animal-derived materials. Such campaigns are emotive – which is why the Consumer Choice Center aims to challenge the claims these campaigners make, by using an evidence-based approach.
In the coming weeks and months, we will gather more information and arguments for choice in fashion on this page. Watch out for the Consumer Choice Center’s analysts chipping in the debate.