Following prior investigations by The HSUS, the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) ordered Neiman Marcus in 2013 to stop falsely advertising animal fur as “faux”, or be subject to serious civil penalties. And yet, as recently as Tuesday, Neiman Marcus was still at it. We have now submitted another legal petition to the FTC seeking enforcement action against the multi-billion dollar retailer for selling three different items of animal fur apparel as “faux fur” in late 2014 and early 2015.
It’s clear to us that strong enforcement is needed. We’ve shown, via investigations, forensic testing, and other means, that concerned consumers are being misled by companies that use animal fur and mislabel their products, again and again, without serious reprimand or punishment.
American consumers are still being duped into buying animal fur—it continues to be a widespread problem as evidenced by a Dec. 2014 Today Show Rossen Reports investigation. The FTC is empowered to impose penalties of up to $5,000 and a year in jail for Fur Products Labeling Act violations, and $16,000 for consent order violations, and it can start cracking down on Neiman Marcus and the many other companies we’ve caught violating the law.
Many Americans reject animal fur apparel, knowing of the many exposés that have documented inhumane conditions of rabbits, mink, and foxes in tiny wire cages, and bobcats, coyotes, and domestic dogs caught and killed in indiscriminate steel traps set on our public lands.
These compassionate consumers deserve to have their strong moral positions protected, and our consumer protection laws should be fully enforced. Consumers can also educate themselves to protect their interests by learning how to tell animal fur from faux.