Fur CEO dares to say “Ask Me Anything”
Feb 12 2019 - The CEO of Fur Europe takes up a challenge to answer any questions about fur. Going live on Twitter. Mette Lykke Nielsen commits to answer questions about fur farming, fashion and sustainability in a Q&A session that will take place on Wednesday 20th Feb at 11 am CET. ''I think it is important for a sector to be open and transparent, and we thought this could be a fun and more personal way for people to address the sector,'' says the CEO of Fur Europe. People can forward their questions on Twitter up until 19 February using the hashtag #FurMeUp.
International fur design competition focuses on sustainability
Feb 08 2019 - The finale of REMIX 2019 – a contest dedicated to young international designers, hosted by the International Fur Federation (IFF) and supported by Vogue Talents – the platform dedicated to the search, selection and visibility of talents, returns to Milan. An exceptional jury including, Sara Sozzani Maino, Gabriele Colangelo, Astrid Andersen, Bryanboy, and Samantha De Reviziis will declare the winners on the evening scheduled for February 24th. The sixteenth edition of REMIX returns to Milan during AW 19 Fashion Week. The theme for the international competition is: Responsibility, a theme which all participants will have to display through their own interpretation, through their creations. Since its inauguration in 2004, intended to support young designers all over the world, REMIX has given opportunities to thousands of students to become part of the teams of the most important fashion houses: from Astrid Andersen, who showcases her collections during London Fashion Week, and Nicolas Martin Garcia, who is part of the design team of Roberto Cavalli; to Roderick Buijs, enlisted by Louis Vuitton, Thom Barends, a product designer for Haider Ackermann, and Sally Bohan, a senior design at Patagonia. After a long selection phase, which began in September 2018, 10 finalists were chosen from scores of applicants from 23 countries. These 10 finalists will compete in the final on the evening of February 24th in Milan. The 10 finalists, from all over the world, are: Long Chen - Asia REMIX winner Yuliya Yuknovich - Eurasia REMIX winner Alessia Rose Legault - Canada Dong Wang - China Elina Aarela - Finland Christelle Tran-Thiet - France Saskia Reggel - Germany Berivan Cemal - Netherlands Huseyin Ozer - Turkey Sirapop Dechraksa - USA An exceptional jury chaired by Sara Sozzani Maino will crown the winners of the 2019 edition, who will then see their creations at the centre of IFF’s annual fashion advertising campaign: FUR NOW, which will be distributed worldwide in both print and digital, as well as on their social platforms and official website. This year, whoever comes out on top will be awarded the REMIX Gold prize, sponsored by Kopenhagen Furs, where they will receive 25 premium quality Kopenhagen Fur Mink skins to create with, as well as a paid trip to Copenhagen for a weeklong stay at their design studio. During this one-week trip, the winner will have the opportunity to interact with expert craftsmen and explore the newest and most advanced fur processing techniques. REMIX Silver prize winner, sponsored by North American Fur Auctions (NAFA), will receive an all-expenses paid trip to Studio NAFA 2019 at NAFA’s headquarters in Toronto, Canada. Studio NAFA was created to innovate and cultivate expertise in the fur industry. The winner of this prize will learn and practice working with fur through an advanced curriculum taught by master furriers. This intensive training equips the current and next generation of fur designers with technique knowledge, skills and passion for the craft. The final award of the night will be awarded by Saga Furs. The winner of the Saga Award will receive an all-expense paid trip to Saga Furs Design Centre for a one week technical training course. Here they will attend a fur innovation workshop gaining access to Saga Furs 3,000 plus craft techniques archive. Mark Oaten, CEO of IFF states: "We are very proud to be representing one of the most sustainable and natural material in the fashion industry and we keep encouraging young talent to get involved. The level of young designers that we see over the years at REMIX amazes me every time. Comparing creative minds around the world and showing their skills and abilities are key to maintaining this innovative, vital and modern industry. REMIX continues and will continue to push the boundaries of our industry, helping to change the perception of fur". "The new generation is our future. Never before in our history has it been so essential to look at sustainability and start thinking about producing in a sustainable way. Remix gives designers the opportunity to enhance the concept of sustainability by creating ad hoc projects," says Sara Sozzani Maino, Deputy Editor in Chief Vogue Italy and Head of Vogue Talents.
“that’s a completely insane idea, but a good one. Let’s give it a try”
Jan 30 2019 - A fur farm waste product becomes sustainable yarn for fashion. That seems to be the result of the ReUseFoxHair (RUFH) project, administered by Centria University of Applied Sciences, Finland. The project started out with the idea of utilising the hair foxes drop before growing their summer coat. The goal was to test if it would be possible to use loose hair into the production of abrasive tools and polishing pads which the wood and automobile industries use during the finalising painting processes. ‘’Everything started when we did a company visit at Mirka Ltd’s premises with our International Business students; we saw that they produced polish pads made from sheep’s wool. That was when I thought that Blue Fox hair surplus could also be used as a material for the polishing pad. I later called the company’s product developer, and he said the idea sounded utterly insane, but good’’, explains fur expert and Project Manager Pia Blomström.+ Between the company, Centria University and public funding from the Regional Council of Ostrobothnia an experiment was set up to test out the options on a mini mill. ‘’When we first went to visit the mini mill with our fox hair, we ended up spending the whole day there testing the fur with the spinning mill’s staff. A few artisans appeared during our visit, having heard that something unusual was happening, they were eager to try too,’’ Blomström says. During the test however, the Blue Fox hair proved too short to be used as originally intended. Instead the research group came up with a discovery: Combining the Blue Fox hair with longer fibres such as alpaca and wild silk gives enough strength and length to create a yarn that is usable. ‘’By trying different combinations, we ended coming up with an extremely beautiful yarn, which will probably become a new yarn to be used in the fashion industry. The yarn can both be knitted and woven, ‘’Blomström explains. The experiment took place last fall, and the new yarn has yet to be put in production, but it clearly demonstrated how innovation can turn waste into something beautiful and at the same time contribute to a circular economy.
WelFur gets stamp of approval by the European Commission
Jan 16 2019 - The European fur sector’s animal welfare programme WelFur has been endorsed by the European Commission as a Self-Regulation and Co-Regulation Initiative. It is the first animal welfare programme ever to be promoted in the Commission’s databaseof so-called ‘soft law’ initiatives. “The European Commission does not promote whitewashing, so it is a recognition of the credibility of WelFur and it shows the fur industry works responsibly with animal welfare and society,” Mette Lykke Nielsen, CEO of Fur Europe, says. Fur Europe is the umbrella organisation for the whole value chain of the European fur sector. Amongst other things, the Commission’s description of WelFur reads: “WelFur is a science-based, practical and reliable on-farm assessment systems as an instrument to monitor and improve welfare and demonstrate, in a transparent way, good animal welfare practices.” All programmes promoted under the Self-Regulation and Co-Regulation Initiative must go through an evaluation process in which the programmes are assessed against a range of principles, including stakeholder participation, transparency, reliability, feasibility and legal compliance. Consequently, programmes promoted under the Self-Regulation and Co-Regulation Initiative are quite often the backdrop for binding legislation, and this is the very purpose for Fur Europe. “Fur Europe supports the idea of taking binding animal welfare legislation to the next level, whether this is at national or EU levels. WelFur assesses the animals rather than the housing system. It is dynamic and future-proof, and it comes with serious sanctions towards non-complying farmers. If someone looks at fur animal legislation, there is real no reason to look elsewhere, because WelFur is exactly what animal experts recommend,” Mette Lykke Nielsen says. WelFur is developed by independent scientists at seven European universities, and is being implemented on 3.500 European mink and fox farms in the period 2017-2020.
High participation in the WelFur programme
Dec 01 2018 - The European fur sector's ground-breaking animal welfare programme WelFur is popular amongst European mink and fox farmers. Despite participation being voluntary, 96% of them have signed up to take part of the programme. "Our members understand the need for a transparent animal welfare debate that is based on scientific knowledge rather than populist emotions. 96% is an incredibly high number," Mette Lykke Nielsen, CEO of European office Fur Europe, says. However, there may be a second motivation for fur farmers to join the programme. Without the WelFur certificate fur farmers will be cut off from selling their fur pelts at the international fur auction houses by 2020. WelFur is an animal welfare assessment system developed by independent scientists from seven European universities. It is based on the methodology of the European Commission's world-famous Welfare Quality programme. WelFur is by far the most comprehensive animal welfare programme to be implemented on a continental scale. Approximately 3,500 fur farms will be individually assessed and potentially certified.
Fashion consumers: the environment is the most important
Nov 29 2018 - According to a new survey more consumers care about workers being paid fair, living wages and environmental protection than animal welfare, recycling and local manufacturing. The survey was published in November 2018 and was commissioned by Fashion Revolution, a global sustainability movement dedicated to "change the way our clothes are sourced, produced and purchased". The survey was carried out amongst 5,000 respondents of the biggest European fashion market in Germany, the UK, Italy, France and Spain. According to the survey the majority of people think it is important for fashion brands to reduce their long-term impact on the world by addressing global poverty (84%), climate change (85%), environmental protection (88%) and gender inequality (77%). Only 30% found it important that clothing was been produced without harming animals. When it came to the purchasing decisions, 37% of the consumers said that they consider the environmental impact of clothing production before deciding whether to buy or not. In general, a vast majority of consumers ask for more transparency from fashion brands. An overwhelming proportion even think that the government should be regulating fashion brands to ensure that they protect human rights, the environment and are more transparent about their business practices and impacts
New certification program for fur launched in Paris
Oct 04 2018 - Today, the International Fur Federation (IFF) officially launched the FURMARK program in Paris. FURMARK is the international fur community's comprehensive certification and traceability scheme. The program is based on three key principles: science, independent, third-party inspection and transparency. The FURMARK label will demonstrate the sustainability of the fur industry and gives consumers the confidence to select fur as a natural and sustainable choice. FURMARK merges five existing labels in Europe and across the world, such as Welfur at the European level. FURMARK goes beyond animal welfare and includes the dressing and dyeing process. The process will be certified to ensure human health and environmental sustainability. The IFF expects a maximum of 30 dressing and dyeing companies in the world to be certified. The program will be ready for roll out in 2020.