Animal welfare and advocacy nonprofit assesses 46 European countries based on how well they regulate factory-farmed fur
Born Free USA, a global leader in animal welfare and wildlife conservation, has released a report ranking 46 European countries based on their regulation of factory-farmed fur. While a handful of countries have achieved complete bans on fur farms and more are phasing them out, almost half of the countries in the survey were found to have little or no protective legislation for furbearing animals or for animal welfare in general.
Five countries have banned fur farms, according to Born Free USA’s report, and seven more are phasing them out. Twenty-two countries offer almost no meaningful animal welfare legislation.
“While the countries at the top of this report lead the world by completely banning fur farms, it’s shocking that so much of Europe offers so little regulation of animal welfare,” said Angela Grimes, acting CEO of Born Free USA. “It’s important that people understand the scale of suffering that’s involved in the fur industry. Animals are sentient creatures not to be exploited.”
More than 85 percent of the fur used in the fashion industry comes from factory-farmed foxes, mink, chinchillas, rabbits and other animals. Millions of animals around the world are kept and killed in fur farms, where they live in extreme confinement and under severe chronic stress. They are often bred and maintained to maximize fur output, with little or no consideration for their health or quality of life, leading to deformity and obesity.
These realities may seem shocking, and that is no accident. The tendency in America is the same as in Europe: to keep information on fur farming away from the public eye as long as profits are strong. Investigations like these can provide information on the scale and scope of these enterprises where government data collection falls far short. Born Free USA’s next goal will be to lift the shroud of secrecy over these same sorts of unregulated fur farms in the United States.
“This report highlights the cruelty of the fur-farming industry in Europe, but this isn’t just a European problem,” Grimes said. “Demand for fur products in the U.S. supports these largely unregulated factories and others like them around the world – including here in the United States, where there’s no federal regulation of fur farming, and a patchwork of varying state regulations, if any.”
To join Born Free USA in the fight against factory fur:
Shop fur free. Visit www.furfreeretailer.com/ to explore almost 1,000 companies that have committed to a fur-free policy.
Learn more about what Born Free USA is doing to fight the fur trade at www.bornfreeusa.org/fur-trade.
Join Born Free USA’s email list for opportunities to urge retailers, designers, modeling agencies, magazines, and banks to go fur free. Visit www.bornfreeusa.org/newsletters to sign up.
Advocate and educate. Visit www.furfreealliance.com for additional resources on this vital issue.
About Born Free USA
Born Free USA, a national 501(c)(3), believes that every individual animal matters. Inspired by the Academy Award®-winning film Born Free, the organization works locally, nationally, and internationally on the conservation frontlines, in communities, classrooms, courtrooms, and in the halls of Congress to end wild animal cruelty and suffering and protect threatened wildlife.
Launched in 2002, Born Free USA was inspired by Virginia McKenna and her late husband Bill Travers, who, along with their son, Will, founded The Born Free Foundation (UK) in 1984. Their experience in Kenya filming the classic 1966 Academy Award®-winning film Born Free, the story of Joy and George Adamson’s fight to successfully return Elsa the lioness to a wild and free life, launched the couple’s “compassionate conservation” movement, aimed at keeping wildlife in the wild. This movement continues to motivate millions of followers and activists across the globe. In 2007, Born Free USA merged with the Animal Protection Institute.
Located in south Texas, Born Free USA’s Primate Sanctuary is the largest such facility in the U.S. and provides a permanent home for roughly 500 primates retired from research facilities or rescued from inhumane conditions at zoos and private ownership. These primates have often endured a lifetime of abuse, neglect, and cruelty, and many come to the Sanctuary with special physical and emotional needs, requiring extensive care and services. Current species in residence include: bonnet macaque, long-tailed macaque, pig-tailed macaque, rhesus macaque, stump-tailed macaque, Japanese macaque, olive baboon, and hamadryas baboon.
SOURCE Born Free USA