VF Corporation, the parent company of footwear and apparel brands The North Face, Timberland, Vans, Wrangler, and Lee, released its first-ever Animal Derived Materials Policy. The new policy—developed with the help of animal-rights organizations The Humane Society of the United States (HSUS) and Humane Society International (HSI)—effectively prohibits the use of fur, angora, and exotic leather materials in all of its brands’ products. “As we continue to promote the development of viable commercial substitutes to animal materials,” VF’s Vice President of Global Corporate Sustainability Letitia Webster said, “this policy will help to ensure that the materials we use today are procured from sources that prioritize animal welfare and responsible business practices.” While VF will continue to use other animal products–including leather sourced from animals not deemed “exotic”—in its brands, HSI Vice President Kitty Block says the new policy is a step in the right direction. “We commend VF for committing to stop using fur and other animal materials in their products,” Block said. “As a leader in the global apparel industry, VF’s policy sends an important message to the industry that animal suffering has no place in fashion.” Several major brands—including Dutch, the parent company of Joie, Equipment, and Current/Elliott—have recently made similar commitments to phase out animal products from their brands.
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