The Mother Ship Of Retailers, Neiman Marcus, Is Adding Its Name To The Growing List Of Luxury Retailers Who Are Backing Away From Fur Products.
When a luxury retailer decides to stop selling fur, it’s a signal that fur may be fashion history and not future, even for the wealthiest of customers. And that’s a good thing for animal welfare and the environment.
Neiman Marcus Group (NMG), the luxury retailer that includes brands Neiman Marcus, Bergdorf Goodman, and Horchow, has announced its plan to go fur-free by early 2023. The company will eliminate all products from its shelves that contain animal fur and close its existing fur salons.
“We are updating our assortment to feature multiple sustainable and ethical luxury fashion categories,” said Geoffroy van Raemdonck, chief executive officer at Neiman Marcus Group, in the press release. “It is clear the future is fur-free, and that includes the ultra-luxury space.”
Other luxury brands such as Coach, Michael Kors, Gucci, Burberry, and Furla already made such commitments in prior years. Luxury parka maker Canada Goose announced earlier in June that it will stop buying fur by the end of 2021 and will not make any products with fur by the end of 2022.
NMG’s announcement comes on the heels of the group’s creation in April of its first environmental, social, and governance (ESG) team and strategy to focus on environmental sustainability in the fashion and retail industries.
Its newly created ESG team’s first goal has been to collaborate with independent third-party consultants to assess various ESG issues throughout its business. NMG has also committed to disclose any ESG issues across its business, including animal welfare.
As part of its sustainability efforts, NMG made several ESG improvements in 2021. The group sold two distribution facilities in January. It plans to use the proceeds to increase, among other things, efficiency and sustainability in its existing supply chain. It is also working on creating multiple categories within sustainable and ethical luxury fashion for both its Neiman Marcus and Bergdorf Goodman brands.
NMG’s Animal Welfare Policy prohibits the use of fur from animals killed solely for their fur. This includes mink, fox, rabbit, chinchilla, coyote, and lamb. However, it does allow ethically sourced sheep and cattle for specific product categories. Also, NMG will continue to sell exotic skin products but they will have to be certified by the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora and allowed for sale by the International Union for Conservation of Nature.
“As a company, NMG will continue to sell products made from synthetic, faux fur materials, and traditional animal fabrics like cashmere, leather, mohair, down, wool, and silk,” the group said. “We will also continue to monitor animal welfare concerns associated with these materials and work with brand partners to promote best practices related to their sourcing, production, processing, use, and innovation over time, including through our Sustainability Edits that feature products with certified materials and other preferred product attributes for consumers.”