Many luxury fashion brands have initiated a rebranding for the start of the new decade, leaving fur behind and adopting new textile materials. Alexander McQueen and Balenciaga are the latest to announce that their fashion lines will be abandoning fur in future collections. The two Kering-owned fashion houses join Bottega Veneta and Gucci in the movement to remove animal pelts from high fashion.

“Most of the [Kering] Group's houses do not use fur,” Kering wrote in a 2020 Universal Registration statement. “Balenciaga, Alexander McQueen, and MCQ also no longer use fur in their collections.”

Kering Working Alongside The Humane Society to Ban Fur

Kering continues to ban fur from its individual luxury designers, working with the Humane Society International as well as the Humane Society of the United States. The company’s move to leave behind animal pelts is the result of a nearly ten-year relationship between the Humane Societies and Kering.

“Every time a big fashion name like Alexander McQueen or Balenciaga goes fur-free, it sends a clear message that fur has no place in modern society,” CEO of the Humane Society Kitty Block said. “This is a statement that consumers care more about sustainable solutions than the fur trim on a bag or coat. We look forward to continuing our work with Kering and the rest of the industry, to ensure that humane and innovative materials are the future of fashion.”

Alexander McQueen and Balenciaga both follow a move that Gucci made in 2017 when the luxury brand announced it would ban fur from its lines while simultaneously joining the Fur Free alliance. This partnership showcased Gucci and parent company Kering’s dedication to leaving animal products out of fashion.

"I don't think [fur is] modern," says Gucci CEO

“Do you think using furs today is still modern? I don’t think it’s still modern,” Gucci’s CEO Marco Bizzari told Business of Fashion. “And that’s the reason why we decided not to do that. It’s a little bit out-dated.”

Kering started removing fur from its brands nearly two decades ago when Bottega Veneta went fur-free at a time when almost no other houses felt the need to ditch animal pelts in fashion, but now multiple brands have pulled the plug on animal fur including Versace, Prada, Chanel, Jimmy Choo, Michael Kors, Armani, DKNY, and Burberry.

Fashion giants like Adidas, North Face, and the Prada Group also decided to join the Fur Free Alliance’s Fur Free Retailer program. Internationally, the movement to abandoned fur in textile manufacturing is gaining traction. The United Kingdom currently is debating a full-scale ban on the sale of fur.

“We’re thrilled that yet another iconic British fashion figure has taken a stand against the cruel fur industry and joined the growing list of fur-free designers,” executive director of the Humane Society International/UK Claire Bass told Plant Based News. “By removing fur from its collections, Alexander McQueen is in tune with the British public. The vast majority of whom do not wear fur.”

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