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VF Corp protests Amazon fires; stops buying Brazil leather

04
Sep '19
Pic: Shutterstock
Pic: Shutterstock
US-based VF Corporation, which owns shoe and apparel brands like Timberland, Vans, Dickies and the North Face, recently announced it will stop buying Brazilian leather. The company would resume buying Brazilian leather when it is confident and assured that the materials used in its products do not contribute to environmental harm in Brazil, it said in a statement.

The company said it is no longer able to assure that leather from Brazilian suppliers meets this commitment, according to US media reports.

The decision follows heightened international outcry over Brazil’s response to the ongoing fires in the Amazon rainforest. There have been public protests in other countries and world leaders have voiced concern that the Brazilian Government is doing too little to protect the world’s largest tropical rainforest.

Demand for beef and leather has reportedly resulted in huge swathes of land in the rainforest to be cleared for cattle ranches, potentially a major factor behind the fires.

Many of the ongoing fires were initially set by cattle ranchers or farmers to clear land. A local investigative report in July showed JBS SA , the world’s largest meatpacker and leather producer, had been buying cattle from ranchers operating on land that the government has said must not be used for grazing. JBS denied the report, although it acknowledged the difficulty of tracing some cattle’s origin.

According to the Centre for the Brazilian Tanning Industry, the main leather trade group in Brazil, the country exported $1.44 billion of bovine leather in 2018. Its largest export markets were the United States, China and Italy, which together consumed about 60 per cent of Brazilian leather exports last year. (DS)

Fibre2Fashion News Desk – India


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