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The Fur Debate

BoF editor-in-chief Imran Amed recaps the week in the business of fashion.
Raccoon dogs at a fur farm, fur, Fendi Autumn/Winter 2015 | Source: PETA, Saga Furs, InDigital
By
  • Imran Amed

LONDON, United Kingdom — Where do I begin? So much happened this week in the business of fashion that picking a single topic to address today has been particularly challenging. At the beginning of the week, Richemont's Johann Rupert created industry-wide buzz after inviting LVMH and Kering to join him in backing the soon-to-be-official Yoox Net-a-Porter Group. He also raised the spectre of a popular revolt against the luxury sector's well-heeled clients due to growing income inequality around the world. Then, there was Vanessa Friedman's polarising review of the Apple Watch, the resignation of Twitter chief executive Dick Costolo and the start of the menswear season here in London.

But on BoF, the biggest topic of conversation this week was the place of fur in today's fashion industry, which we explored on BoF Voices, fashion's forum for debate. What's clear after reviewing your comments is that fur remains a highly polarising topic. Here is an unfiltered sampling of some of the most interesting comments on both sides of the debate.

Jane Samoilys: "Pro fur and Anti fur need to join forces. Both can help each other. The demand for fur is never going to go away. Much smarter to develop animal welfare boundaries that work well for the animals and well for the industry. ... PETA would be a far more respected and beneficial organisation if it rallied to the task of worldwide improvement of the living and breeding conditions of these animals."

Isabel Hope: "My decision not to support the fur industry doesn't mean I support PETA, it means I support the freedom of animals. People abuse those who cannot speak, whether they feel pain or sadness, as long as they have no voice, it's alright. We may not be animals, but doesn't that mean we have the ability to protect and not misuse them?"

Keith Kaplan: "There is no more honest barometer of public opinion than the cash register. And, as fur sales continue to rise and more and more designers integrate fur into their collections the trends are clear."

LondonGlitter: No matter what your stance on the use of animal fur in fashion is, if you had to see what actually goes on in the fur farms and if you had to kill the animal yourself in order to wear it instead of having someone else do it for you, I bet most fur wearers would have a change of heart/mind/stomach.

Enjoy our top stories for the week gone by:

Inside the Growing Global Fur Industry From auctions to activists, BoF goes inside the $40 billion fur industry's relationship with fashion.

Stuart Vevers on Coach's Fashion Strategy
Ahead of Coach's first ever menswear show, creative director Stuart Vevers speaks to BoF about the brand's fashion strategy.

Colin's Column | What Is the Purpose of LC:M?
Colin McDowell asks, what does London Collections: Men have to offer young men whose style is driven more by music and subcultures like skateboarding than the catwalk?

Panama, Latin America's Nerve Centre
As the gateway to a regional fashion market worth $150 billion and a hub connecting 600 million people, there is more to Panama than meets the eye.

New Life in Paris
Once in short supply, young Paris-based labels like Officine Générale, Vetements and Jacquemus are building budding businesses. What's changed?

Op-Ed | Fashion's Hashtag Cults
Designers are using social media to amass virtual nations of followers.

London Calling in Pre-Ramadan Rush
London is the fashion capital where oil-rich Arabs spend the most cash in the run up to Ramadan.

Op-Ed | Your Ads Need Mobile Video
Mary Meeker's latest Internet Trends report shows mobile video advertising is significantly under-exploited. Fashion brands would be wise to move fast, argues Qasim Mohammad.

Imran Amed, Founder and Editor-in-Chief

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