Neiman Marcus to phase out fur, eyes plant-based alternatives

March 28, 2022 |

In Texas, department store Neiman Marcus—one of the one’s largest fur sellers—is phasing out the high-end material in favor of slaughter-free alternatives. The company expects to stop selling fur entirely by March 2023. 

CEO Geoffroy van Raemdonck recently told Vogue Business that Neiman Marcus’s fur operations are “a small but real part of our business that touched a lot of our loyal customers,” but the company is eager to prove to customers that that they are “replacing something, not taking something away.”

Neiman Marcus competitors Macy’s and Bloomingdale’s are already fur-free, according to Vogue Business, and Saks Fifth Avenue intends to be out of the fur business by the end of this year. Several states, including California and Massachusetts, have moved to ban the sales of new fur products.

“The future of luxury is fur-free,” retail consultant Robert Burke tells Vogue Business. “Of all US retailers, [Neiman Marcus] was probably the most steeped in the tradition of fur, so this is a very vocal and visible move for them.”

van Raemdonck says finding alternatives that don’t rely on plastics is a challenge. “It is an under-developed set of solutions right now, and we don’t want to solve one problem by creating another. Part of our role as a retailer is encouraging brands to develop alternatives, and exposing their solutions to our market so they can get feedback and support.” He did single out Stella McCartney’s Koba plant-based faux fur and Prota Fiori’s upcycled grape and apple leather as promising solutions. “Sustainability is a journey,” adds. “Fur is just the first step.”

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Category: Chemicals & Materials

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