Chief executive of Hermes, Patrick Thomas told Reuters: “We are now breeding our own crocodiles on our own farms, mainly in Australia. We cannot face demand. We have massive over-demand. We are limited by our ability to train new craftsmen.” Thomas even went on to condescendingly say that "the world is not full of crocodiles, except the stock exchange!”
It can take up to three or four crocodiles to make just one purse. The breeding is expensive because crocodiles are put in isolation from one another in order to ensure the skin isn't damaged and is free from bite marks etc. Hermes is already having trouble producing 3,000 bags/year, which means anywhere from 9,000-12,000 crocs are killed every year for the sole purpose of being turned into an accessory for the rich and the famous.
The success of the bags is crucial to the success of Hermes. The bags account for 40% of Hermes' business. Customers of Hermes are willing to wait years and spend up to $50,000 in order to get their hands on a bag. Allegedly Victoria Beckham has spent $1.5 million dollars on Hermes Birkin bags.
Photos provided by Eccorazzi and Google Images.
Writer: Kate Murphy