Many people today still believe skin and fur are “by-product” of the meat industry.
This is not true.
According to International Fur Trade Federation, 85% of fur skin came from factory farming. More than a billion of animals are killed for its skin every year and processed into raw materials oversea where lacks proper legislation protecting fundamental rights of animals, workers and conserving planet.
Choosing vegan fashion is a step towards sustainability and cruelty-free practice.
There is no doubt the current fashion business activity is creating negative impact on the environment. While plastic is an obvious culprit for polluting the ocean ecosystem, animal based materials seem to remain mysterious.
The Pulse of the Fashion Industry report released in 2017 by The Boston Consulting Group found that three of the four most environmentally damaging materials are leather, silk, cotton, and wool which happen to be derived from animals. How does each materials perform in environmental impacts. Let's take a look at facts and numbers.
According to Kering Environmental Profit & Loss Group Result 2016, polyurethane leather has less than half the impact on the environment as animal-derived leather. Just let that sink in for a second: Leather that comes from animals is more than twice as harmful to the environment as polyurethane, a plastic!
Tannery workers, including children, were found to be performing hazardous tasks such as soaking hides in chemicals. Bangladesh tannery workers according to Pulitzer Center. The unprotected workers stand barefoot in cancer-causing chemicals and use acids that can cause chronic skin diseases. An estimated 90 percent of these tannery workers will die before the age of 50.
A dog naps atop a stack of leather scraps on the banks of the large effluent canal that carries toxic waste to the nearby Buriganga River. Image by Larry C. Price. Bangladesh, 2016.