Luxury retailer Hermès has once again come under fire over the sale of handbags made from exotic skins, after animal rights activists confronted the group's CEO at its AGM in Paris this week. 

Isabelle Goetz, a spokesperson for animal rights group PETA, asked chief executive Axel Dumas if Hermès had plans to stop using exotic skins. He responded that the company "ensures its suppliers respect international regulations in addition to its own rules of ethical conduct". The move came just a day after a Hermès crocodile handbag set a world record at auction in Hong Kong. 

PETA revealed two surveys on its website this week showing that young ostriches were "electrocuted, beaten and dismembered and reptiles lived crammed into stinking pits and were sawed alive" to provide materials for Hermès' luxury bags. 

The Birkin handbag maker has come under repeated attack from PETA over its use of crocodile and ostrich leather after an investigation in March exposed violations at two farms and slaughterhouses in South Africa. 

Hermès refuted the accusation, describing it as "a groundless claim". The company said the farms shown in the video do not belong to the company, and operate at a secondary level within the industry.

Probe exposes violations at ostrich leather farms 

Hermès did not respond to a request for comment at the time of going to press.