Fur Free Europe ECI – it is time to #MakeFurHistory
In Animal ethics,Animal welfare,Fur bans,Fur Farming,Our work - fur farming,Recent News

Fur Free Europe ECI – it is time to #MakeFurHistory

BRUSSELS, 18 MAY 2022 – The Fur Free Alliance today celebrated the launch of the European Citizens Initiative (ECI) Fur Free Europe. Working in collaboration with animal protection groups across Europe, including Eurogroup for Animals, the ECI campaign has one year starting today to collect one million signatures from EU citizens who support our call to make fur history in Europe.

The Fur Free Europe ECI calls on the EU to ban fur farming and the placing on the market of farmed fur products, since the production of fur is unethical, unsafe and unsustainable:

  • The complex behavioural needs of wild animals, such as American mink, fox and raccoon dogs, cannot be met in fur farms: confining domesticated species like rabbits to small cages and killing them solely, or primarily for their fur cannot be legitimised either.
  • Fur farms also pose an unacceptable risk to animal and human health, as evidenced during the COVID-19 pandemic. Hundreds of mink farms throughout Europe and North America were affected by coronavirus outbreaks leading to mass culling of these animals, and new variants of the virus were found to have been transmitted from mink to humans.
  • Fur farming has a significant environmental impact given that the dressing and dyeing of fur involves the use of toxic chemicals. In terms of land pollution by toxic metals, fur production is ranked in the top five highest pollution-intensity industries. The fur industry also poses a serious threat to native biodiversity. Species, such as American mink and raccoon dogs, which have  escaped animals from fur farms have established populations in the wild ,and are considered to be Invasive Alien Species (IAS) causing and have significant adverse impacts on European native wildlife.

At a meeting of the Council of the European Union (Agriculture and Fisheries Council) in June 2021, the Netherlands and Austria tabled an information note, supported by Belgium, Germany Luxembourg and Slovakia, which called on the European Commission to ban fur farming. The call to end fur farming in the EU on the grounds of animal welfare, public health and ethical considerations, was backed by a total of twelve Member States during the deliberations on this paper.

The ECI Fur Free Europe was officially registered by the European Commission on 16/03/2022 and will run from 18/05/2022 for one year.

Joh Vinding, Chair of the Fur Free Alliance, said:

“There has never been a more urgent need for Europe to make the cruel and unnecessary fur trade history. The fur industry not only treats animals inhumanely for a product no-one needs, but has also been shown to be a breeding ground for outbreaks of infectious diseases such as Covid-19, as well as having a serious negative environmental impact. We know that public opinion in Europe opposes the fur industry and we need European citizens to act now by signing this ECI.”

Fur Free Europe ECI - it is time to #MakeFurHistory