Burberry bans destroying unsold goods, using fur

Getty Images  AFP  BEN STANSALL

Getty Images AFP BEN STANSALL

"Modern luxury means being socially and environmentally responsible", Marco Gobbetti, who is in the process of repositioning the label to be more upmarket, said.

Burberry has come under fire for burning millions of dollars worth of products. Burberry said it will increase efforts to reuse, repair, donate or recycle unsaleable products.

The London-based clothes and accessory maker destroyed nearly 29 million pounds ($37 million) worth of goods in 2018, according to the annual report released in July. Many other companies in the retail and consumer industry, such as Louis Vuitton and Nike, also deliberately destroyed their inventory to prevent the devaluing of high-end price tags they can get in stores.

Burberry has announced the company will stop using real animal fur in its designs and will no longer destroy unsold products.

Burberry physically destroyed 28.6 million pounds worth of finished goods in the financial year to April, up from 26.9 million pounds the previous year, including 10 million pounds worth of beauty products such as perfume.

Exane BNP Paribas analyst Luca Solca said Burberry's announcement could put pressure on other luxury names to be more transparent about how they handle unsold goods.

Some luxury groups offer sales to employees and journalists to limit unsold stock. A new creative director, Riccardo Tisci, will unveil his debut collection for the brand at London Fashion Week this month.

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Burberry said it had gone into partnership with sustainable luxury company Elvis & Kresse to transform 120 tons of leather offcuts into new products over the next five years.

Burberry's September 17 runway show will mark the debut collection for new creative chief Riccardo Tisci, who replaced Christopher Bailey at the helm.

'Burberry is very wise to be ending its association with fur and it joins the ranks of an ever-increasing number of top designers like Gucci, Michael Kors, DKNY and Versace, who have also realised real fur has no future in fashion'.

"We are committed to applying the same creativity to all parts of Burberry as we do to our products", Gobbetti said.

"Substituting natural fur with plastic petroleum-based materials, like fake fur, is. neither luxury nor responsible and sustainable", he said in a statement.

London Fashion Week will not feature any animal fur in its shows for the first time in the event's 35-year history. A protester invaded the catwalk during Mary Katrantzou's show at February's festival, which featured faux fur, and shouted "Shame on you, London Fashion Week!"

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