FINLAND, 29 November 2019 - Two new surveys show that 74 per cent of Finns oppose fur farming in its current form. The surveys, conducted by Finnish market research company Taloustutkimus, also reveal 60 per cent of the Finnish citizens think killing animals for their fur is wrong. The surveys were commissioned by Finnish animal rights organisations Animalia and Oikeutta eläimille.
Last year, 69 per cent of Finns either wanted to ban fur farming completely, or opposed fur farming in its current form. Now the figure has increased by 5 percentage points to 74 per cent. 36 per cent of Finns would ban fur farming completely, following a transitional period—an increase of 6 percentage points since last year. Only 15 per cent of Finns support fur farming in its current form.
In the first survey, respondents were asked the following question: “Which of the following best describes your opinion on fur farming?” The replies ranged from allowing fur farming to continue, to banning fur farming with a transitional period. Heidi Kivekäs, Executive Director of Animalia, says:
”This is a significant result, and politicians should take careful note of it. A substantial majority of Finns do not accept fur farming in its current form. For example, 38 per cent of respondents said that fur farming should only be allowed to continue if animals are given considerably more space and possibilities for species-appropriate behaviour. Inscribing these kinds of animal welfare standards into law has ended fur farming elsewhere, because it is no longer profitable. This has happened with mink farming in Germany, and with fox farming in Sweden, for example. We have to join this European-wide development and phase out fur farming. People in Finland do not want their country to end up being the last European country where animals are farmed and killed just for their fur.”
Requested by Animalia and Oikeutta eläimille, Taloustutkimus conducted another survey with a different sample group. In this survey, fur farming was not presented primarily as a business, or through other positive images. Instead, the survey presented a claim to measure people’s opinion on the ethical justifications of fur farming. The claim was: “It is acceptable to kill farmed animals for their fur.”
The answer to this ethically fundamental question about killing animals was clear: 60 per cent of Finns answered that they partly or fully disagree, that is, they think it is wrong to kill animals for their fur. Only 35 per cent of the respondents fully or partly accepted this claim. Kristo Muurimaa, Campaign and Communications Manager of Oikeutta eläimille, says:
”When people are asked whether it is right to kill animals for their fur, most answer no. The footage from Finnish fur farms that has been in the media, both in Finland and abroad, places Finland in a questionable light. People here and elsewhere know that animals on fur farms do not have a good life. That knowledge is reflected in these answers."
Members of the international Fur Free Alliance have commissioned similar surveys. For example, in Estonia 69 per cent, in Sweden 78 per cent, in Norway 68 per cent and in Denmark 55 per cent of people think that it is wrong to kill animals for their fur.