New guidelines for vegan fashion

YarnsandFibers News Bureau 2020-02-05 09:43:29 – United Kingdom

New UK guidelines on vegan fashion have been drawn up to prevent manufacturers from claiming their products are 'sustainable' solely on the grounds they do not contain animal products.

The guidelines, drawn up by the British Retail Consortium (BRC), the trade body for stores and online sellers, also aim to ensure that fashion items sold as 'vegan' are 100 per cent animal free.

They come at a time of unprecedented demand for vegan clothing and footwear from consumers who have been contacting the BRC for advice on sourcing products that are genuinely free of animal products.

The guidelines mean that businesses must examine every material used in a product, including the ingredients of glues, dyes and waxes, rather than simply eliminating leather, suide and wool.

And they will not be able to label products as 'sustainable' - simply on the grounds they are free of animal products - but must also take into account the environmental impact of the replacements used, such as plastics instead of leather.

Leah Riley Brown, a sustainability policy adviser at the BRC, said shoppers would be able to buy vegan products with 100 per cent confident they were truly animal-free if retailers followed the guidelines to the letter.

Brie Read, founder of Scottish vegan tights brand Snag, which only launched 20 months ago but is on track to hit sales of £20 million this year, told The Guardian newspaper that many customers were confused whether products were truly vegan.

“We’re very much based around our customers and lots of them are vegan and concerned about ethics. They ask us every single day: ‘Are your tights vegan?’," she said.

“For us, it was dyes. A lot of them are not vegan-friendly because they are made out of crushed beetles. We have to be careful about the dyeing process and getting really good cotton.”

A recent poll by market research firm Mintel found that more and more younger consumers were trying to make more ethical fashion purchases but were often confused about the advice available.

Source: EcoTextile News

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