ISRAEL, JUNE 2021 – In a historic decision, Israel introduces a ban on the sales of animal furs, making it the first country to do so. The widely-supported fur sales ban, which includes a few exemptions, was signed into law on the 9th of June by the Israeli Environmental Protection Minister Gali Gamliel and becomes effective in six months.
The ban follows an announcement for new regulations in late 2020 by the minister, who said the use of skin and fur for the fashion industry was “immoral”:
“The fur industry causes the killing of hundreds of millions of animals around the world, and involves indescribable cruelty and suffering.”
Israel’s ban allows exemptions for the use of fur in ‘scientific research, education or instruction, and for religious purposes or tradition.’ The exemption is likely to apply the sale of Shtreimels – fur hats traditionally worn on Shabbat and holidays by ultra-Orthodox men. Gamliel added:
“Using the skin and fur of wildlife for the fashion industry is immoral and is certainly unnecessary. Animal fur coats cannot cover the brutal murder industry that makes them. Signing these regulations will make the Israeli fashion market more environmentally friendly and far kinder to animals.”
In October 2020, the members of the Fur Free Alliance co-signed a letter to Minister Gamliel to show international support for Israel’s plans to end the inhumane and unnecessary fur industry. Today animal advocates around the globe celebrate as Israel’s ban will save the lives of millions of animals and sends a clear message that fur fashion belongs to history.
Growing concern about animal welfare and the ethics of fur is increasingly leading governments to legislate against the fur trade. In October 2019, California made history by becoming the first state in the United States of America to adopt a ban on the sales and manufacture of animal fur products. Over the past two decades, over 15 countries have taken legislative action to ban and phase-out the inhumane practice of fur production, including Austria, Belgium, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Czech Republic, Croatia, Estonia, Germany, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Norway, Republic of Macedonia, Serbia, Slovakia, Slovenia, Switzerland and the United Kingdom. Proposals to prohibit fur production are presently being considered in Poland, Ireland, Lithuania, Bulgaria and Ukraine.