Last November saw animal rights activist group Peta released undercover footage showcasing the animal cruelty carried out on numerous angora rabbit farms in China. Earlier this year French Connection suspended its angora production whilst they carried out internal investigations, whilst selling its remaining stock in store.
However this season saw French Connection resumed the use of angora wool within its collection, which raised former concerns of animal abuse. After receiving more than 100,000 e-mails from Peta supporters and its international affiliates, French Connection confirmed its commitment to ban angora.
“We have always maintained the highest standards in our supply chain and have taken steps to ensure that the angora used in French Connection clothing is carefully collected by shearing and that the rabbits are not mistreated. We would never allow or condone the plucking of fur from live rabbits,” published the British retailer on their website today.
“As a fashion brand we are responsive to our customers and to trends in the market and, despite the steps we have taken to ensure high standards in angora production, we recognise some customers have concerns about the continued inclusion of these fabrics in our ranges. French Connection has ended the use of angora in the production of its clothing and accessories with immediate effect.”
Peta's UK director Mimi Bekheci commented on their decision to ban angora: “We are delighted that French Connection has listened to its customers and joined ASOS, Calvin Klein, AllSaints, Stella McCartney, Tommy Hilfiger, Mango and numerous other global fashion retailers by committing to a permanent ban on vile angora wool.”
The animal rights group highlights that even the shearing of angora rabbits fur puts the animals under tremendous strain and can cause them great pain and suffering as they are tied down and stretched over a board.
“Shoppers now know that if a label says 'angora', it means that defenceless rabbits were subjected to having the fur ripped out of their bodies or were suspended in the air as sharp clippers cut into their sensitive skin. Any cruel designers who continue to use this product of rabbit torture can expect to see their profits nose-dive and shoppers head for the door.”