Are animals killed to make EF International's alpaca fur products?
NEVER. We are animal lovers ourselves and would never sell a product that an animal had to die or suffer for. There’s also a prohibition in effect against killing alpacas for their hides: it is illegal, impractical, and immoral to kill them.
What’s the difference between alpaca wool and alpaca fur?
The fur is called wool after it is sheared from the alpaca (or any animal for that matter). Wool is what is used to make sweaters and other knitted clothing. Anytime something is called a “fur”, by definition, there is a hide attached. The hide is on the reverse side of the fur (protected by a lining) and it looks and feels just like leather.
If fur is murder– How are alpaca furs different?
Unlike other animals with luxurious coats, alpacas are actually worth more alive than they are dead, because the can be sheared once a year as a source of income. Alpacas are farmed and raised in a manner in which promotes long life spans. The longer they live, the more wool can be shorn from them. It would not be practical or ethical to kill Alpacas simply for their hides, because there is so much money that can be made from their wool for clothing. They can generate money throughout their entire lives because their fur grows back when it is sheared to make sweaters, socks, etc. We use the salvaged hides of alpacas that have already died of natural causes to make our fur creations. Our guilt-free furs are simply beautiful by-products of Mother Nature.
I’m afraid I will be allergic to the alpaca furs!?
Unlike sheep’s wool, alpaca fur doesn’t contain lanolin, which is highly allergenic. Alpaca fur is totally non-allergenic, which means that it doesn’t contain any substances that cause allergic reactions. We’ve only known of one person who thought she had an allergy to it and she said it just made her sneeze.
How do I care for my alpaca fur and maintain it’s wonderful feel?
Unless you spill something on the fur, the only maintenance it will need is to be “freshened up” every once in a while by brushing it out with a metal pet brush.
Our furs retain about 90% of their natural oils; therefore, dust and dirt won’t really adhere to them. Any dirt particles will literally slide right off the individual cylindrical-shaped fibers (hairs) of the fur when simply brushed out with a metal pet brush. Also, if you really want the fur to look its best, put it in direct sunlight for a few hours after you’ve brushed it out and it will fluff up even more. If you use your fur on the bed, we suggest taking it outside once a week, or when needed, and giving it a good shake. If you sleep with dogs in the bed like we do, you will see the dog hair fly right off of the fur. If you use your alpaca fur on the floor as a rug, you can vacuum it using the vacuum’s attachment hose. It won’t hurt the fur if you vacuum over it like you would a regular carpet, but it could damage the vacuum, so the hose attachment should always be used.
What if I get a stain on my alpaca fur?
For severe stains like grease, or liquid spills like wine or blood, we recommend using Woolite Foam Carpet Cleaner (it’s a bleach-free cleaner, so the natural colors won’t be compromised). Just spray it on, rub it in with a cloth, let the stain dry, and then brush it out with the pet brush. Alpaca really is maintenance-free; there’s no need to ever dry clean or launder the fur. For light spills or stains, try just brushing out the area with a metal pet brush first. If the stain is still there after the fur has dried, try the Woolite Foam Carpet Cleaner.
Do I have to send my alpaca fur off to cold storage in the summer months and pay exuberant rent for it to be stored?
Never. Alpacas are non-shedding animals. They don’t shed their coats when they get hot, because they are naturally found in snowy, mountainous areas.
How Do I Buy An Alpaca Rug?
At this time, we sell our Alpaca Fur at one event per year, the Big E, (Eastern States Exposition), in West Springfield, Massachusettes. We have a spacious retail set up inside the Young Building every fall.