Joss Stone the Campaigner

Nothing surprises me about Joss Stone, least of all her talent which is phenomenal.

Stone rose to fame in late 2003 with her multi-platinum debut album, The Solid Sessions, which made the 2004 Mercury Prize shortlist. Since then she has never stopped, topping the music charts in addition to a barrage of acclaim from her large coterie of devotees.

As an English soul singer, songwriter and actress, she has scaled great heights at a young age to the astonishment of the world’s media.

However, with tears running down her face and her body painted to look like reptile skin, Joss is the latest celebrity to pose nude in the name of animal rights.

The singer is fronting a campaign to try to stamp out the cruel practice of using crocodile skins for handbags. She called on others to join in leaving wildlife out of their wardrobe.

She bared all for the photographs, with the slogan: ‘3 animals are killed to make 1 crocodile bag. Say NO to exotic animal skins.’

The pictures by Peta come after an investigation by the pressure group which claimed top fashion house Hermès are using tanneries with cruel practices for their reptile-skin handbags.

The crocodile bags can cost as much as £295,000 and versions have been seen on the arms of celebrities including Victoria Beckham and Petra Stunt.

Footage from an undercover video shot at a Texas farm that supplied crocodile skins to the brand showed reptiles left twitching in a bloody ice container to die after being shot with a bolt-gun and cut with a knife. Other covert films showed reptiles crowded in shallow pools, clambering over each other to find space.

After the exposé singer Jane Birkin, once in a relationship with Serge Gainsbourg and famed for the release of their duet ‘Je t’aime…moi non plus’ in 1969, threatened to take her name off the crocodile skin versions of the celebrated Birkin handbag.

As a result of this fracas, Hermès issued a statement saying it worked in the strictest compliance with international regulations and that an isolated irregularity at the Texas farm had been resolved.

However, Miss Stone, twenty-eight, retorted: ‘Although I’m not as familiar with crocodiles as I am with dogs and horses, I know that animals are capable of suffering.’

Elisa Allen of Peta added: ‘We don’t need to steal animal skin for fashion and we’re grateful Joss has joined us in sending this message.’

Looking at you, Joss, is like feeling the comforts of a beautiful flower undulating in a salubrious summer breeze. Although I must admit crocodile skin has some magic over me, nevertheless your message has won me over.

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