NORWAY, 21 JANUARY 2018 – Norway’s newly formed coalition government has agreed to ban all fur farming and have a total phase out by 2024. The ban on the production of animal pelts is part of the “Regjeringsplattformen”, an agreement on governing principles between the coalition parties. Norway, once the world’s top producer of fox pelts, joins a growing list of European nations that are turning their backs on the cruel and controversial practice of fur farming.
Conservative Prime Minister Erna Solberg’s government agreed to shut fox and mink farms that produce about one million pelts a year as part of a deal to broaden her minority government by adding the anti-fur Liberal Party.
The ban must now be voted on in Parliament, but the majority of the country’s political parties are expected to support it.
The inherent cruelty of the fur industry has been a major issue in Norway in recent years. In late 2016, the Norwegian Food Safety Authority (Mattilsynet) announced that their inspectors had been shocked by high level of violations and injuries on Norwegian fur farms during recent inspections. On one farm, caged mink were found with such large open sores that they had to be put to death at the scene. Other chronic animal suffering recorded included one mink who had crawled into a plastic pipe and all but skinned itself alive in its efforts to free itself.
In the same year, local animal rights group NOAH organised the world’s largest anti-fur protest in Oslo and other cities, where thousands upon thousands of people took to the streets against the horrors of the fur trade.
There are more than 300 fur farms in Norway. In 2017 there were 773,000 mink killed on Norwegian fur farms, as well as 140,000 foxes.
Norway can now set an example to other Scandinavian countries Denmark, Sweden and Finland. Denmark kills at least 17 million mink every year on factory farms, only surpassed by China. Finland is one of the world’s largest producers of fox fur and Finnish fur farmers have been globally shamed followed the recent exposure of obesity in factory farmed foxes. This is done to generate a larger pelt and to boost profits for the fur trade.