Fur-ious russian passion

newsletter 07/12/2012

For the period of 10 months of 2012, according to data of official sources, 1.91 billion rub (factory price) of fur goods (excluding headgear) were produced in Russia, which is nearly 4% more in comparison with the same period of 2011 (1.841 billion rub.).* Russian factories produced 3.16 billion rubles of headgear for the period of January – October of 2012 (which is 32% more than for the period of January – October of 2011).

Among companies that are listed in daily updated GLOBAS-i® database, according to their annual financial statements, the largest company in this market sector is OAO Russian Fur (OAO Russky Mekh), Moscow, with 378.7 million rubles in profit. The second largest is OOO Consensus (OOO Soglasie), Stavropol Krai, with 150.13 million and the third is OOO Marital Leather and Fur factory, Mari El Republic, with 139.02 million. 

Today the Russian industry is not able to meet a steadily growing demand for fur products. Russian producers are lacking as technical as well as technological knowledge needed in manufacturing coats from mink hides. Domestic factories, however, have mastered production of women outerwear from refined sheepskin and are now supplying largest amounts of such coats on Russian and international markets. Made in Russia headgears are also in high demand.

As for imported fur products, leading fur producers are Greece, China and Hong Kong generally is in the lead, but fur coats that are made in Italy have always been popular among Russian women. Popular among Russian women «Made in Italy» coats are likely to be sewed in China and the label only means an Italian technology and patterns. 

According to official data for the period of 9 months of 2012 total cost imported fur products in Russia was about 4.46 billion rubles (143.74 million dollars). Total cost of exported fur products by domestic producers was only about 19.14 million rubles (617.36 thousand dollars). 

The main supply of fur products in 2012 was coming from Turkey (22.8%), UAE (19.44%) and Hong Kong (14.78%). 13.24% of total products came from China, 10.5% from Greece and 7.69% from Italy. Coats and other fur goods were exported to Montenegro (55.64%), Turkey (8.64%), UK (7.8%). All percentages are given in value terms.

Table 1. 

Import in Russia by country for the period of 9 months of 2012 
Import by country Quantity Total amount, $
Turkey 152 254 32 769 681
UAE 31 602 27 944 845
Hong Kong (HKG) 21 797 21 250 217
China 2 271 992 19 026 390
Greece 13 698 15 091 057
Italy 19 171 11 050 965
Germany 16 193 5 274 932
Estonia 15 729 3 368 991
Latvia 21 748 2 641 070
Others 51 381 5 318 782
TOTAL: 2 615 565 143 736 930


Table 2.

Export from Russia by country for the period of 9 months of 2012
Export by country Quantity Total amount, $
Montenegro 204 343 528
Turkey 148 53 324
UK 114 48 170
UAE 914 45 000
Switzerland 168 31 341
USA 1 149 28 636
Tajikistan 1 930 25 490
France 46 9 213
Republic of Korea 2 6 173
Others: 312 26 489
TOTAL: 4 986 617 364 

Russia exports both processed and raw fur skins of animals. For the period of 9 months of 2012 total cost of exported from Russia fur items was 1.27 billion rubles (41.02 million dollars). For the same period total cost of imported fur skins in Russian market was 555.95 million rubles (17.93 million dollars), some of exported from Russia fur skins might be among them.

Many large producers are purchasing raw material on so called «fur auctions». There are five largest international auctions: two in USA, and one in each Denmark, Finland and Russia. 

Unfortunately, more than a half of imported in Russia furs are coming through «grey schemes». It is caused by extremely complicated and costly international delivery and only few large companies can afford it. On the domestic market the product is transported predominantly by air. Many buyers prefer to trust the delivery of material on outsource logistic companies as it helps to make all relocations more transparent.

Modern fur coats are very diverse by style, colour, material, texture and ways of hide treatment. Most expensive coats are made from lynx belly fur and the price might be equal to a price of a fancy car — more, than 60,000 EU. Russian lynx fur will be even more expensive, because these cats in Russia are listed as endangered species in the Red Book. You will not be able to wear such coat in public as someone might take you for a poacher. Such coats are usually made from Canadian lynxes that were caught on limited territory, where it is allowed. Second most valuable furs are sable and chinchilla. Barguzin sable can be priced as high as 150,000 EU. 

Most popular fur is durable mink, which makes it one of most practical choices. Yet, a lot of people prefer less durable but more delicate and comfortable chinchilla. It is worth mentioning that king's mantles were usually made from chinchilla fur. 

Russia as a cold country in most of its parts is one of primary consumers of fur products — almost three thirds of all world fur production settles here. Experts do not expect this trend to change in coming years. Fur in Russia is still highly desirable.

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*In 2011 2.422 billion rubles of fur goods (excluding headgear) were produced in Russia, which is 45% more than in 2010.