On Wednesday, Gucci announced that, starting with its SS18 collection, it will no longer use mink, fox, rabbit, Karakul lamb, and raccoon, dog as part of its new 10-year “Culture of Purpose” sustainability plan. The brand clarified to Refinery29, however, that it will still use lamb, goat, and alpaca.
Gucci President and CEO Marco Bizzarri announced the plan during the 2017 Kering Talk at the London College of Fashion, saying, first, that Gucci will join the Fur Free Alliance, eliminating animal fur from its SS18 collection onwards; and, second, that Gucci will be contributing 1 million Euro as a founding partner of UNICEF’s Girls’ Empowerment Initiative.
“Being socially responsible is one of Gucci’s core values, and we will continue to strive to do better for the environment and animals," Bizzarri stated. "Gucci is excited to take this next step and hopes it will help inspire innovation and raise awareness, changing the luxury fashion industry for the better.”
The Italian fashion house’s new plan of action is focused on three major pillars: environment (which is where the fur usage comes in), humanity (which focuses on the welfare of its employees through gender equality, diversity, and inclusion), and an incubator that will foster innovation within the company — and Bizzarri says that creative director Alessandro Michele has been on board since the start.
“In selecting a new creative director I wanted to find someone who shared a belief in the importance of the same values,” Bizzarri said in a press release. “I sensed that immediately on meeting Alessandro for the first time. Together, by committing to a culture of purpose, taking responsibility and encouraging respect, inclusivity and empowerment, we want to create the necessary conditions for a progressive approach to sustainability.”
While Gucci joins the ranks of Hugo Boss, Armani, and YOOX Net-A-Porter, it’s the first major fashion house to redefine itself outside of often considered old-world luxury staples like fur and gilded coat.