15 Feb Birkenstock Voted Most Animal-Friendly Shoe Company
Birkenstock has received the peta2 Libby Award “Most Vegan-Friendly Shoe company 2017.”
With this award, which is highly regarded throughout the global vegan community, the youth organization of PETA USA is honoring Germany’s largest shoe manufacturer for its commitment to producing fashion without animal products. For the 12th time, companies and celebrities were awarded in the categories of Heroes, Food, and Lifestyle. peta2 invited young people from around the world to vote online. Never before in the history of the award has participation been higher–the number of voters more than doubled compared with last year.
For Birkenstock, this is already the second award from the world’s largest animal rights organization. In September 2016, PETA Deutschland presented Birkenstock with the “Vegan Fashion Award” for a vegan model of the iconic sandal style “Madrid.”
“We are delighted to receive this award because it comes from the people we make our products for–our customers,” said Birkenstock CEO Oliver Reichert. “Especially among younger customers, there is a growing percentage who choose the vegan way of life. We offer many vegan products for these customers. The peta2 Libby Award motivates us to continue on this path.” Vegan fashion still faces the prejudice of being unfashionable. Reichert continues: “We prove exactly the opposite with our vegan collection and show that vegan fashion can be animal friendly and also stylish and trendy. If the demand for vegan shoes continues to grow, so will our range of vegan products.”
“We are thrilled to award Birkenstock with the peta2 Libby Award for Most Vegan-Friendly Shoe company,” says Anne Brainard, director of corporate affairs at PETA. “As everyday consumers learn more about the importance of wearing vegan, Birkenstock continues to add more animal-friendly options to its collection, making it easy to have fun with our wardrobes while taking steps toward a kinder world for all beings.”
The Libby Award was created by peta2 to honor companies and people for their exemplary behavior. Peta2 is the youth organization of PETA USA, the world’s largest animal rights organization with more than 6.5 million supporters worldwide. It is intended for young people aged 13 to 21. “Libby” is short for “liberation”–which reminds us of the movement’s key objective. The idea behind the Libby Awards is to motivate manufacturers of food and clothing to take a stand for the vegan lifestyle and thus also strengthen animal rights. Eating solely plant-based foods is becoming increasingly widespread these days, especially among young people. With it, the demand for fashion without any animal components is also growing.
Birkenstock is actively pursuing this development: one-fifth of Birkenstock sandals are made without animal components. Remarkably, the percentage of cork sandals within the vegan collection has more than doubled three years in a row. Birkenstock sells roughly 25 million pairs of shoes globally each year.
However, not only does the Birkenstock footwear collection offer vegan product alternatives, but new product categories do as well. For example, the legwear collection contains a wide range of cotton-based products. Moreover, all products from the recently launched Birkenstock NATURAL CARE line are vegan and therefore free of any animal-based ingredients.