Fur free protest outside Max Mara in London

Animal Welfare Alliance Calls for Fashion Brand Max Mara to Go Fur-Free 

Protest tool sees over 180,000 direct mails sent to brand by animal lovers around the world


Milan/Vienna, 26 February 2024 – Together with partners of the international Fur Free Alliance (FFA), global animal welfare organisation FOUR PAWS has launched a global campaign calling on Italian fashion brand Max Mara to finally give up real fur. During the “Big Four” fashion weeks, FOUR PAWS took the streets of major European cities – Vienna, Berlin, London, Zürich and Sofia to protest in front of frequented Max Mara stores. At the same time together with FFA members supporters and animal lovers worldwide are asked to nudge Max Mara to go fur-free by sending protest mails to the company´s Board of directors, a strategy that successfully forced Prada to give in back in 2019. On 22 February during Max Mara´s Runway in Milan, a branded FFA hot-air balloon elevated the fur-free message to higher grounds over Max Mara’s headquarter in Reggio Emilia.  

Joh Vinding, Chairman of the Fur Free Alliance, says: "Max Mara's adherence to the archaic and cruel fur trade makes the company look outdated and indifferent to extreme animal suffering. Max Mara should join its fur-free competitors and put compassion before profit." 

“Max Mara is truly the laggard of premium Italian fashion companies and is still turning a blind eye to the obvious cruelty fur production entails. Gucci, Versace, Armani, and many others have already shown the way. No matter how small a fur application, enormous animal suffering is hidden. In 2022 alone over 30 million minks, foxes and raccoon dogs were bred in fur farms, cramped in small wire cages and brutally killed for their fur. Max Mara needs to phase out fur now, for the betterment of millions of animals, humans and the environment alike. Additionally there are plenty of animal-free materials available that are as fashionable as fur, but far kinder.” 

Thomas Pietsch, Head of Animals in Textiles at FOUR PAWS

Fur Industry - Animal Cruelty and Ecological Nightmare 

On fur factory farms, wild animals spend their entire lives in wire-bottom cages, deprived of the ability to engage in natural behaviours—only to be killed by gassing or anal-electrocution. In the wild, animals are held in traps for days without food or water until trappers come to retrieve them, often gnawing off their own limb first in a desperate attempt to escape. 

Fur production is also environmentally devastating. Fur factory farms and tanneries are extremely harmful to our soil and waterways—pumping waste and the toxic chemicals into the surrounding environment. And the traps responsible for killing wild animals are indiscriminate, often maiming and killing non-target animals, like endangered species and people’s pets. All told, the fur industry is an environmental nightmare. 

Now that the majority of consumers want nothing to do with the fur trade, major fashion brands have responded by announcing policies prohibiting the use of fur. Twenty countries throughout Europe have banned fur production because of animal cruelty and risks to the environment and public health. In addition, Israel, California and 14 cities across the U.S. have banned fur sales to create a more humane marketplace and drive innovation. 

Fur Free Retailer Program 

The Fur Free Retailer Program is the world's leading initiative to connect fur-free businesses with consumers looking for ethically produced products. The program is an initiative of the Fur Free Alliance (FFA), which is active in over 35 countries around the world. The Alliance is an international coalition of over 40 animal welfare organisations working together to end the breeding and killing of animals for their fur. More than 1,500 brands and retailers are now part of the initiative. 

FOUR PAWS is the official representative of the Fur Free Retailer Program in Austria, Australia, Bulgaria, Germany, the United States and South Africa. The global animal welfare organisation offers support and advice to companies aiming for a demonstrably fur-free new start. To this end, FOUR PAWS is available as a contact and mediator in the high-profile joining of the international FFR Program. 

Send an email to Max Mara to let them know you care for animals want them to go fur-free! Follow up by leaving a comment on Max Mara’s social channels (Facebook, Instagram and Twitter). 

Michael Kellner

Michael Kellner

PR International Officer


+43 (0) 664 504 38 97

VIER PFOTEN International 
Linke Wienzeile 236
1150 Vienna, Austria

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FOUR PAWS is the global animal welfare organisation for animals under direct human influence, which reveals suffering, rescues animals in need and protects them. Founded in 1988 in Vienna by Heli Dungler and friends, the organisation advocates for a world where humans treat animals with respect, empathy and understanding. The sustainable campaigns and projects of FOUR PAWS focus on companion animals including stray dogs and cats, farm animals and wild animals – such as bears, big cats and orangutans – kept in inappropriate conditions as well as in disaster and conflict zones. With offices in Australia, Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, France, Germany, Kosovo, the Netherlands, Switzerland, South Africa, Thailand, Ukraine, the UK, the USA and Vietnam as well as sanctuaries for rescued animals in eleven countries, FOUR PAWS provides rapid help and long-term solutions. www.four-paws.org

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