Gucci is launching its first-ever range of vegan sneakers made from wood pulp.
The luxury fashion house says it has spent two years researching animal-free materials.
Gucci vegan sneakers
Its new collection consists of three new sneakers including a cruelty-free version of its iconic Gucci Rhytons.
The new range retails at $702-$940 and is produced in Gucci’s Italian factory. Moreover, all of the sneakers are made using Demetra – a faux leather made from almost 80 percent raw materials. Organic cotton, recycled steel, and recycled polyester also feature in the collection.
Marco Bizzarri is the President and CEO of Gucci. According to reports, he said: “In our 100th anniversary year… Demetra is a new category of material that encapsulates Gucci’s quality and aesthetic standards with our desire to innovate, leveraging our traditional skills and know-how to create for an evolving future.
“Demetra offers our industry an easily scalable, alternative choice and a more sustainable material that also answers the needs of animal-free solutions.”
Despite the venture into cruelty-free materials – Gucci is still under mounting pressure to ditch exotic skins.
An online petition calling on the brand to remove alligator and crocodile leather from its collections has exceeded 68,000 signatures.
Moreover, vegan charity PETA, which launched the petition, says raising exotic animals for fashion could ‘spark the next pandemic’.
The organization then added: “Many alligators and crocodiles who are raised on farms for their skin are kept crowded together in highly unhygienic conditions, one on top of the other in pens of putrid water.
“This creates a potentially serious major breeding ground for many zoonotic pathogens; causative agents of diseases that can spread from other animals to humans. [This] includes salmonella, vibrio, Aeromonas spp., Pseudomonas spp., E. coli, trichinella, West Nile virus, and others—all of which crocodilians have been found to carry and potentially pass on to humans.”