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A major French fashion group has pledged to ditch exotic skins in a move branded ‘compassionate’.

SMCP, which owns brands including Sandro, Maje, and Claudie Pierlot, has 1,466 outlets in 40 countries, including the UK.

It banned fur last year, and now has taken a further step, by saying it will stop selling items made out of the skins of snakes, crocodiles, ostriches, kangaroos, and other exotic animals.

‘Compassionate decision’

Now vegan charity PETA – which has released several exposes of the exotic skin industry – has branded the decision ‘compassionate’.

PETA Director, Elisa Allen, said: “Every item made out of exotic skins is a product of horrible suffering by the animals who were killed for it in gruesome ways, including some who were skinned alive while fully conscious.

“We applaud SMCP Group’s compassionate decision and encourage other brands to follow its example.”

PETA adds that SMCP Group adds its name to a growing list of fashion brands, designers, and retailers – including Chanel, Victoria Beckham, Selfridges, Vivienne Westwood, and Paul Smith – which have all banned exotic skins from their collections.