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New study: Pandemic leads to increased demand for compassion in fashion

FOUR PAWS reveals that almost 90 per cent want fashion industry to prioritize animal welfare

9/13/2021

BOSTON, MA - AUGUST 3, 2021 – Millions of animals suffer and die every year for fashion items made of fur, leather, and wool. Yet new research commissioned by FOUR PAWS, the global animal welfare organization, has revealed there is strong demand for more kindness to animals in our wardrobes. The YouGov poll among almost 14,000 participants across twelve countries* found that nearly two thirds of adults (64%) are aware of animal cruelty in the fashion industry and since COVID-19, almost another third (31%) are now either seeking products with high animal welfare credentials or avoiding animal-based products all together. FOUR PAWS new program “Wear it Kind” urges consumers and industry to say “No” to animal cruelty, and to choose only animal friendly sustainable fashion

According to FOUR PAWS new research, every third (37%) adult chooses one fashion brand over another if they prioritize animal welfare. Overall awareness levels of animal cruelty in fashion are constantly rising. Globally, nine out of ten people (86%) want companies to make animal protection a key priority alongside environmental protection and social standards.

“The survey results show consumers increasingly expect brands to ensure the welfare of the animals used within their supply chains. Brands acting in this way, are more likely to resonate well with consumers. Though the results are encouraging, we need more people to be aware of animal cruelty when buying textiles, more transparency within animal supply chains, and to achieve good animal welfare outcomes, a reduction in the use of animal-derived materials overall.” 

-Jessica Medcalf, animal welfare in fashion expert at FOUR PAWS.

A trend called compassion

The research revealed that since the beginning of the Coronavirus crisis, fashion purchasing habits have changed significantly, with 50 percent noting some level of change. For instance, in fashion-conscious Italy, almost two-thirds (64%) have made changes to how they purchase fashion, and a quarter of French respondents (27%) state they now seek sustainable fashion with higher animal welfare standards. Globally, one in eight (13%) has decided to now avoid animal-based fashion products all together.

Global report

Global report

See the full results here

“More and more consumers are becoming knowledgeable about the use of animals in fashion and the social and environmental consequences of their fashion purchases. Shoppers want change, and most recognize that animal protection must be an essential third pillar of ethical fashion. Wear it Kind includes a significant outreach and education effort directly to brands, compelling them towards prioritizing transparency on animal welfare issues in their supply chains. While we have a long way to go to improve conditions for the vast numbers of animals used in fashion, by working together, animal protection organizations, brands, retailers, producers and shoppers can all create a better world for animals.”

-Danika Oriol-Morway, Executive Director of FOUR PAWS USA

* The global study was conducted online between 7th-18th January 2021, and is comprised of representative samples of the following twelve markets:

| Australia | 1,060 |
| Austria | 1,054 |
| Bulgaria | 1,013 |
| France | 1,027 |
| Germany | 2,038 |
| Italy | 1,024 |
| Netherlands | 1,046 |
| South Africa | 508 |
| Spain | 1,026 |
| Switzerland | 529 |
| United Kingdom | 2,109 |
| United States | 1,213 |
| Total | 13,647 | adults 18+ (51% female, 49% male)

Global report

Global report

See the full results here

Together, we can drive an animal-friendly fashion future

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FOUR PAWS is the global animal welfare organization for animals under direct human influence, which reveals suffering, rescues animals in need, and protects them. Founded in 1988 in Vienna by Heli Dungler and friends, the organization advocates for a world where humans treat animals with respect, empathy, and understanding. FOUR PAWS’ sustainable campaigns and projects focus on companion animals including stray dogs and cats, farm animals and wild animals – such as bears, big cats, and orangutans – kept in inappropriate conditions as well as in disaster and conflict zones. With offices in Australia, Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Germany, Kosovo, the Netherlands, Switzerland, South Africa, Thailand, Ukraine, the UK, the USA and Vietnam, as well as sanctuaries for rescued animals in eleven countries, FOUR PAWS provides rapid help and long-term solutions. www.four-paws.us

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