New York-based designer Diane Von Furstenberg has banned mohair from her global brand’s future collections after an exposé by animal rights organisation PETA revealed workers mutilating and killing goats to obtain the material.
Von Furstenberg, whose label’s creative director is British designer Nathan Jenden, joins a list of more than 240 brands worldwide that have pledged not to sell the material, according to PETA. Other brands that have banned mohair include Gap, Banana Republic, H&M, Topshop, and Zara.
The move follows PETA’s disturbing investigation into the South African mohair industry which is the source of more than 50% of the world’s mohair. The exposé shows that shearers – who are paid by volume, not by the hour – worked quickly and carelessly, leaving angora goats with gaping wounds. Workers then roughly stitched the animals up without giving them any pain relief and unwanted goats died in agonising ways.
“PETA’s exposé pulled back the curtain on the way in which gentle baby goats cried out in fear and pain as they were shorn for mohair jumpers and scarves,” said PETA director Elisa Allen. “Diane Von Furstenberg has joined the growing list of fashion brands that recognise that today’s shoppers don’t support cruelty to animals.”
The movement to ban fur in fashion has been moving at pace in the past year with a number of high profile brands and designers now refusing to use it including Versace, John Galliano, Michael Kors, Jimmy Choo and Furla to name a few. Online luxury fashion group YOOX NET-A-PORTER has also banned fur from sale across its websites. British MPs recently debated the ban of all fur imports to the UK, which gained widespread support from all political parties, however the British Government has yet to agree to any firm action. Fur farming has been banned in the UK since 2000.
However brands are also increasingly shunning other animal-derived products. Online fashion retailer ASOS recently revealed that it will no longer sell products containing mohair, cashmere, silk, feathers & down and bone, teeth & shell (including mother of pearl). Younger, millennial consumers are said to be driving the movement for brands to show their supply-chain is cruelty free.