Design & Fashion

Fur in children’s clothes: two toxic garments recalled

LAV (the Italian Anti-Vivisection League) notices the presence of toxic substances in some children’s garments containing fur. The Ministry of Health bans sales.

An analysis conducted by the Italian Anti-Vivisection League revealed that a few children’s garments containing real fur have a very high amount of unhealthy toxic substances, whose use strictly depends on the REACH European regulation on the “registration, evaluation, authorisation and restriction of chemical substances”. The National Institute of Health (ISS) thought necessary to pursue investigations and in light of the findings obtained, the Ministry of Heath commanded the requisition of some garments.


The investigation conducted by the LAV

The investigation conducted by the LAV in 2014 is called Toxic Fur 2 and it denounced the presence of toxic substances in garments containing fur for children under 36 months. The swatches involved in the investigation are a D&G coat for girl with cloth insert of rabbit fur; a Blumarine girl’s jacket with rabbit fur collar; a Woolrich boy’s parka with raccoon fur.


fur children toxic substances
Hexavalent chromium (chromium +6) and trivalent chromium (chromium +3): these are the substances found in the products that were recalled.


The garments recalled from the market

After that the investigation was carried out by the ISS, the Ministry of Health decided to definitively sequester two garments from all distribution channels: the Blumarine branded girl’s jacket (that LAV already investigated) and a newborn blanket made of lambswool designed by Christ. The clothes by D&G and Woolrich were also found positive in the “Toxic Fur 2” investigation, but the ministry declared that it was unable to make the analysis because of non-finding.


The toxic substances found

Hexavalent chromium (chromium +6) and trivalent chromium (chromium +3): these are the substances found in both tested products. Their composition is derived from the oxidation of a very heavy metal, chromium, which is widely used in the textile industry, particularly in tanning industry. These are unhealthy substances for human beings and the environment, as Greenpeace’s Detox campaign on the textile industry states.
Chromium +6 listed as a carcinogenic substance for any living being since it corrodes the skin and mucous membranes and, if ingested, can be even deadly. Chromium +3 is less dangerous than chromium +6 and is one of those allergens that cause effects of skin sensitisation in case its amount is too large.


The issue of toxic substances used in the textile industry and the fact that they’re not written on the labels is a problem that should be constantly monitored. Ethical organisations that care about the environment play an important role in this sense but the revolution should come from the consumers: as Simone Pavesi, manager of the LAV campain on fur, says “consumers can limit the exposure to these dangerous substances by avoiding wearing and purchasing for them and their kids garments containing even small pieces of animal fur.”


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