11 DAYS. 22 CITIES. 137 ACTIONS. 1 DEMAND: DROP FUR.
On April 20, Moët Hennessy Louis Vuitton (LVMH) held its Annual General Meeting in Paris, France, the most important corporate event of the year for LVMH.
CAFT could not miss the opportunity to crash Bernard’s party. Instead of shaming LVMH for a single day in Paris, we decided to extend the affair over 11 days in 8 countries and 22 cities – all with the same simple demand: announce a fur-free policy.
Let’s take a look at these 11 exceptional days of action…
42 PROTESTS IN 24 HOURS
April 20 was the single most active day of protest in the anti-fur movement since CAFT’s inception, and perhaps ever, with 42 protests around the planet.
LVMH ANNUAL GENERAL MEETING
The smiles and small talk never got off the ground at the LVMH Annual General Meeting of shareholders in Paris. At 8:30 am, 50 activists from Collectif Sipe and CAFTs EU and USA began a day of raucous protest, the perfect introduction to the global anti-fur movement for all of the LVMH shareholders in attendance.
Adding to the public spectacle, a billboard truck played imagery of animals killed for fur on a continuous loop. Activists even held an afterparty, bringing the action to LVMH’s Cheval Blanc hotel, where many of the attendees were staying. Nothing says “we know what a special day this is for you” like a hotel protest. An old favorite for those of us at CAFT.
Meanwhile, activists on the Western Hemisphere had LVMH juggling megaphones…
New York City is the fashion capital of the United States. Of the 42 protests around the globe that day, 24 were held in that city by one single group, NYC-Animal Defense League. For multiple brands, they literally hit every location in the city. They also hit obscure but meaningful targets. Three out of three Dior boutiques agree: this is the kind of determination that will win this campaign.
Idaho is the potato capital of the United States. Of the 75 LVMH luxury houses, Boise has not one. But they do have a dedicated activist and a branch of LVMH-owned laser hair removal chain Ideal Image. Some might shy away from that target. Boise joined the campaign on April 20. We thank them for embodying the ethos of grassroots decentralized campaigning that inspires us all.
ONE HUNDRED THIRTY-SEVEN ACTIONS
The turnout for the AGM Week of Action was monumental. 137 actions is more than we can reasonably detail in this wrap-up, but we can provide a snapshot. Let’s break it down into numbers.
28 LVMH brands were visited by activists.
10 new brands were welcomed to the campaign. (And we look forward to getting to know each and every one.)
Top 5 brands activists love to hate, with protest counts:
- Louis Vuitton: 36
- Dior: 18
- Tiffany & Co: 15
- Fendi: 11
- Loro Piana: 7
Top 5 cities by number of actions:
- New York City: 44
- Paris: 27
- Los Angeles: 17
- Amsterdam: 13
- Boston: 11
11 corporate headquarters, 3 museums/exhibits, 1 hotel, and 1 market were visited by activists. Ideal Image’s Tampa home office was met with protest the same day as the Boise retail location. Activists invaded the Starboard Cruises boardroom in the middle of a corporate presentation. From local businesses in Boston and Dallas and Salt Lake, to Louis Vuitton and Dior and their respective museums in Paris, the heat was on LVMH from top to bottom.
CAFT’s message for these companies is simple: deal with LVMH, deal with us. Whether or not they sell fur, the protests will continue until LVMH institutes a company-wide fur-free policy. We are not motivated by what feels good, but by what works. The animals deserve no less.
BEYOND THE NUMBERS
In their breadth, these actions reflect exactly the sort of growth we want to see at this stage in the campaign. Collectively, they are a display of the power of our collective force. Though some groups may be small in person, the global coalition is large – when working together, every action really does count.
The explicit goal of this coalition is to forever end the killing of animals for their fur. Our method is to dismantle the retail market, forcing one company after another to abandon fur, until the industry collapses. Without question, LVMH poses the greatest challenge we’ve ever faced. Recently, it became the first European company to be valued at over 500 billion dollars.
Success hinges on a comprehensive use of resources and a collective effort from every animal advocate. Failure is not an option.
Thank you to everyone that participated in this action.
If you are reading this and want to get involved, please sign up for The Action Team and get active for animals.