Group Says ‘Righteous Fur’ Deserves a Market
Fur, at least the real kind, is not really in fashion in
the U.S., with most consumers preferring to buy the faux type for a variety
Now, however, some are suggesting that designers and retailers need
to be thinking of selling one variety of real fur because it will protect the
environment and create needed commerce right here at home.
The nutria is a large
rodent that was brought to the U.S. in the 1930s from South America for its
fur. As has happened with many other foreign species brought to the U.S., this
quickly reproducing species found a way into the wild and their numbers took
off. With the growing population came decimation of native habitat and species
in Louisiana and Maryland’s Eastern Shore. At one point, according to the Louisiana
Department of Wildlife and Fisheries, up to 100,000 acres of marshland in the
state was destroyed by the rodents. That number has dropped to 23,000 with
a hunting program to control the nutria.
according to a Times-Picayune article, more than 300,000
nutria are killed every year with hunters receiving $5 per tail. Most of the
pelts are destroyed.
Cree McCree, founder of an organization called Righteous
Fur, “It’s a beautiful
fur, and right now most of it is going to waste.”
Ms. McCree recently ran a
show in New Orleans that put products made from nutria on display.
this will go beyond a cool New Orleans event. I believe that some designers
who have been reluctant to work with fur in the past might be interested in
nutria when they understand the whole picture, that these animals are doing
terrible damage to our coast,” she told The Times-Picayune. “I
think we need to honor the animal by using the animal, not just killing it.”
Questions: Is there a compelling for creating consumer
demand for nutria fur in the U.S.? What would marketers and
retailers need to do to overcome obstacles created for fur
sales in recent years?
- Environmental advocates promote nutria fur as a fashionable
way to help protect the wetlands – The Times-Picayune
- Righteous Fur – BTNEP Estuary Resources
- Nutria – National Invasive Species
- Nutria Control Program – Louisiana Department of Wildlife & Fisheries