The Fur Free Alliance, a coalition of over 50 animal protection organisations representing millions of supporters worldwide, expresses its profound disappointment and frustration at the European Commission’s (EC) decision to delay the urgent need to end fur farming in the EU. Instead, the Commission has requested an opinion from the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) by March 2025 on the welfare of animals kept for fur production, with a final decision to be taken by March 2026. This delay means tens of millions of animals will continue to suffer on European fur farms in the coming years. The Communication from the Commission is in response to the successful Fur Free Europe citizens’ initiative, which collected 1.5 million validated signatures demanding a ban on fur farming and fur sales in the EU.
The Fur Free Alliance considers the EFSA opinion as a needless and unjustified delay, as there is already a vast body of evidence that concludes that the housing system in fur farms cannot under any circumstances meet the needs of essentially wild animals, such as minks, foxes and raccoon dogs, who are kept in tiny cages and killed solely for their fur. Fur farms also pose a risk of pandemic outbreaks, as evidenced by the recent cases of COVID-19 infections among minks and humans in several countries. Moreover, the fur industry is one of the most polluting industries, as it uses large amounts of water, energy and toxic chemicals to process the animal skins.
The EC also plans an evaluation and assessment on the revision of the Textile Labelling Regulation, including a public consultation. Putting labels on fur products does nothing to change the horrible conditions and the suffering of the animals on fur farms, and is not a real solution to the animal welfare problems on fur farms.
The Fur Free Alliance has recently launched a public campaign, targeting President von der Leyen and Commissioner Kyriakides, with the slogan “Do the right thing”, and this week published footage exposing the horrifying truth of the fur industry in the European Union. The video shows footage from fur farms in Lithuania, Finland, Poland, Spain, Denmark and Latvia, and reveals the conditions and the suffering of the animals, despite the industry’s claims of high welfare standards.
Joh Vinding, the CEO of the Fur Free Alliance, said:
“The European Commission has not taken the right decision and has ignored the voice of 1.5 million citizens and many Member States who want a ban on fur farming and sales in the EU. We are confident that the scientific evidence will support our position and show the terrible suffering of millions of animals on fur farms. We urge the EC to act quickly and propose a legislative ban, instead of delaying with a needless consultation.”
The Fur Free Alliance calls on the European Commission to reconsider its decision and to propose a ban on fur farming and fur sales in the EU as soon as possible.