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A petition for fashion giant Levi Strauss & Co to stop using leather has gathered thousands of signatures.

Animal rights organization PETA is calling for the brand to switch to using vegan leather for patches on its jeans.

The organization bought shares in Levi’s in a bid to push them towards ditching leather last year.

Why use vegan leather?

Activists claim leather production is not only ‘unacceptable’, but a leading contributor to climate change.

PETA accused the clothing giant of ignoring one of its core values, which is ’empathy’.

The organization claimed the most effective way for Levi’s to reduce its environmental impact is to use vegan materials.

It added: “More and more consumers around the world are recognizing that it’s unacceptable to abuse and kill animals to make clothing and that leather isn’t a mere by-product, or left-over, of the meat industry.

“It’s an industry worth over $100 billion a year.

“Leather is an economically co-dependent product made to meet consumer demand.

“It’s often more profitable than the flesh of the animal.”

PETA’s call to action

‘Business-savvy switch’

PETA state the move to vegan leather is ‘business-savvy’, as brands such as Tesla and von Holzhausen have already made the switch.

Doc Martens last year boasted the success of its vegan range and claimed the range accounted for almost half its total sales.

More vegan leather brands are emerging across the globe, using materials from banana and apple skin to mushrooms and leaves.

Levi Strauss & Co has been contacted for comment.

Emily is a News and Features Writer for Plant Based News. She has previously worked as a journalist in Devon, UK, reporting on local issues from politics to the environment.