Further to the statement of 20 February 2020 published by VIVA Foundation on their blog, we uphold our standpoint and refer to the following facts as regards the aforesaid document.
1. VIVA suggests that LPP should prove their innocence. It is the accusing party’s obligation to present evidence supporting their theses.
Despite their polemics, PETA Germany and VIVA Poland have never provided the public or LPP with any evidence confirming their accusations, i.e. linking Reserved to the farms in question.
Both organisations pass their judgments by using generalised statements.
2. The VIVA Foundation has never identified the source of information where they condemn 90% of the world cashmere market.
To our knowledge, PETA Germany failed to indicate the location of farms that treat animals in such an inhumane way. This means that they may still be at risk.
3. From the very beginning
we have communicated that if the certification of cashmere does not give us the confidence as to the humane manner of obtaining it, we will resign from it completely.
Despite this, the organizations continue to raise charges against the brand, overlooking this key aspect of our communication. Moreover, they claim that Reserved has declared that cashmere would never be withdrawn.
4. Both organizations spread false accusations that LPP has been communicating to its employees that cashmere is obtained in an inhumane manner.
All LPP employees receive the same information as the company published in the statements.
5. We question the credibility of the accusations made by both organizations against us and only against us.
Despite our earlier declarations of switching to certified sources of cashmere, PETA Germany and VIVA Poland have directed public attention only at our company. They never explained the real reasons for using the Reserved brand in their action.
We are dealing with defaming the image of the Polish family company LPP. In light of the VIVA Foundation’s statement of 20 February 2020, we reaffirm our belief that the best solution would be to submit the case to the court. A number of circumstances and events indicate that VIVA Poland intentionally discredits the Reserved brand under the pretext of concern for animal welfare, in particular:
– publication of unsubstantiated accusations indicating the use of fibre from farms using unethical methods,
– manipulating the discussion on the fanpage,
– choosing the Reserved brand as the object of a campaign, which is difficult to understand, given the brand’s marginal use of cashmere (while a number of companies using this material on a much wider scale operate on the Polish and European market).
We regret that the VIVA Foundation and PETA Germany, through their unethical actions, playing on the emotions of the general public and false arguments, are trying to tarnish the positive achievements of those public benefit institutions in our country, that are actually fighting for the rights and welfare of animals in an ethical manner.
Previous Statement 16.02.2020
Following the activities of VIVA Foundation against Reserved we raise our objections as to the motives for the conduct of this organisation.
In the autumn last year LPP — owner of Reserved brand — published the assumptions of the new sustainable development strategy. One of its pillars is the issue of humane treatment of animals. Already at that time we communicated that as of 2021 wool, including cashmere, used to produce our clothes will originate solely from certified and verified sources, guaranteeing humane treatment of animals. We declared that if obtaining this raw material in this way proves impossible – we would resign from further use of it. This statement was then communicated to PETA Germany. Earlier, we used the same mechanism of operation regarding mohair and as of 2020 it is not included in our collections.
Nevertheless, VIVA Foundation and PETA Germany started an intensified attack against our brand, trying to convince the public that the raw materials used by our brand are obtained in an inhumane manner. To substantiate that, the organisation regularly uses photographs and films prepared by PETA Germany which show drastic images with no relation to Reserved brand whatsoever in order to influence the public and defame us. In this manipulation, the organisation uses social and traditional media.
Another issue questioning the actual intentions of the organisation is the fact that the boycott and the hard-line solutions have been targeting the company which, compared to their competitor clothing producers, has been using cashmere in production to a very limited extent. In the coming collections by Reserved it constitutes a negligible share — merely 0.007% (which means that only 7 pieces out of a hundred thousand pieces of clothes contain cashmere). So far, VIVA Foundation has failed to explain why only our brand has been the target of their groundless attack. The curious thing is that when VIVA Foundation started their call on the internet for mass protests against our brand, they had not contacted us on the matter before. We did not receive the requested information which farms are shown in the photos and films from May last year, which, if it proven to belong to any of our suppliers, could have rendered it possible for us to react strongly.
Despite our commitment to completely eliminate cashmere from our collection in the event of failure to obtain certified cashmere, VIVA still continued to defame our brand. To date, they have not responded to our official explanations which we provided right after becoming knowledgeable of the social media calls for mass protests in front of Reserved stores. Moreover, we have evidence that in the discussions on the internet conducted on their own page VIVA Foundation has been removing and hiding our comments with the intention to completely cut the internet users from the standpoint presented by LPP.
As a company which for years has been taking care of transparency of our actions, we are open to a substantive discussion. That was also true in this case. However, VIVA foundation has been knowingly ignoring it by presenting one-sided and unreliable information.
In an effort to maintain the transparency of our actions, we have decided to take another step forward. We declare that until the finalisation of contracts with certified farms where cashmere is obtained we have decided to completely suspend the sale of clothes containing cashmere in the 2020 collection.
Nevertheless, we express our indignation at the lack of ethics and manipulation presented by VIVA Foundation. We question the real motives for the actions of this organisation and actual care for the welfare of animals. Therefore, we are considering taking legal action against VIVA Foundation which for unknown reasons decided to defame Reserved brand by falsely invoking animal protection issues.
At the same time, we call on all clothing companies which express true care for the fate of cashmere goats to join LPP in our actions to obtain this raw material in a responsible manner. An industry wide agreement will significantly support and speed up education of farmers and increase the standards of humane treatment of animals.
Previous Statement 13.02.2020
Animal humane treatment is one of the key pillars of LPP’s sustainable strategy.
In 2014 we completely resigned from the use of angora wool; in 2016 — from the use of fur, and since 2019 we have not been using mohair. Clothes with cashmere blend constitute a mere 0.007% of the collections.
As of 2021 wool, including cashmere, used to produce our clothes will originate solely from certified and verified sources, guaranteeing humane treatment of animals. The foregoing will be confirmed by the Responsible Wool Standard certificate (https://responsiblewool.org), ensuring that the farms are controlled in terms of upholding five animal freedoms, such as freedom from hunger, discomfort, pain, injury or distress. Additionally, the certificate confirms that the animals have been provided with space allowing for their natural behaviour.
LPP SA is a Polish family business and one of the fastest growing clothing companies in the region of Central and Eastern Europe. For over 25 years it has been successfully operating in Poland and abroad, offering its collection already on 25 markets, including in such prestigious capitals as London, Berlin, Tel Aviv or Moscow. LPP manages five fashion brands: Reserved, Cropp, House, Mohito, and Sinsay. The company has a chain of over 1700 stores with the total area of over 1 million sq.m. The online offer of the brands collections is available on 30 markets. Through a global supply chain, the Polish clothing producer distributes over 200 million pieces of clothing to three continents. LPP plays another important role as it employs over 25 thousand people in its offices and sales structures in Poland, Europe, Asia, and Africa. The company is listed on the Warsaw Stock Exchange in the WIG20 index and belongs to the prestigious MSCI Poland index.