Canada Goose sheds fur for sustainability

Dene National Chief Norman Yakeleya. (File photo/CKLB).

Canada’s popular parkas may start to look and feel a little different next year.

Ever since Canada Goose announced its commitment to sustainability, all animal fur and exotic skins are to be expelled from the organization by the end of this year.

This means Canada Goose’s popular parkas will no longer be able to sport its furry trim.

This is “to ensure some of the most environmentally impactful materials across the business come from certified sustainable sources,” reads the release.

But some definitions of the word sustainable may differ across the globe.

To the Dene National Chief Norman Yakeleya there’s nothing more sustainable than the relationship shared between the animals, Dene and the land.

He is worried about what this trend might mean for the livelihood of the Dene fur-trappers.

“We cannot allow the outside society to tell us how to live on our land,” Yakeleya says.

He says this decision shows a lack of respect for Canada’s trappers, hunters and gatherers.

“There’s a special relationship with the Indigenous people and the animals,” he says. “The animals provided for us for thousands of years until we got into the value of economic exchange.”

The company is prepared to transition 90 per cent of its materials to recycled and organic fibres to reach net-zero emissions by 2025, as outlined in their sustainability report.

“We want to support our harvesters in our small communities, but more importantly to support that way of life on the land. And we are not,” Yakeleya says.

He suggests his people get involved in the industry and create their own parkas, not rely on companies like Canada Goose to make fur fashionable but a necessity for winter wear in Northern Canada.

To assist in this transition, Canada Goose has set up a buyback program to “end the purchasing of new fur” by 2022.

Customers are able to return their Canada Goose fur and receive a credit to use towards any future purchase.

About the Author

Mariah Caruso
Mariah Caruso is a digital journalist, originally from Toronto, Canada. She graduated from the University of Toronto with a Hons. Bachelor of Arts and completed her Journalism post-grad at Sheridan College. She has an insatiable appetite for life, storytelling, connecting to the people, and getting to the heart of the issue. Mariah is excited to begin her journey and career in Yellowknife, NWT, and get involved with the community. If you have a story idea, feel free to send her an email at mariah.caruso@cklbradio.com