October 20, 2006
A concerted effort by animal rights campaigners in spreading anti-fur message had the effect that fur shops began to close down and the fur trade decreased dramatically. Fur farming became illegal in Austria after the last fur farm was closed in November 1998.
In 2000, the fur industry began to fight back due to resurgence in popularity of fur as more general clothes stores began to sell fur, hidden as accessories and spruce. A nationwide campaign began against clothing chains which were selling the most fur.
'Kleider Bauer', a specifically Austrian chain with 50 outlets in financial trouble, changed their mind and stopped fur sales. The decision by Peek & Cloppenburg
(P&C) of finally agreeing to stop selling fur by 2007 appears to have turned a trickle into a full scale rout of the fur industry in Austria.
Activists also took part in an international campaign against big clothes retailer Zara which led to the chain declaring that they would not be selling fur in any of their stores.
Activists approached all major clothes retailers to make them sign an agreement against fur and the first to sign was 'Schops', which has 124 outlets and it agreed to stop selling fur by 2007.
Anti-fur campaigners have intensified protests against those shops which are still holding out against adopting an "ethical" policy in their business dealings.