Norway set to ban fur farming

Around a million mink and foxes are killed annually in the Scandinavian country.

In what is another blow for the morally bankrupt fur industry, we can confirm that fur farming is expected to be banned by the new government in Norway. The new three party coalition government has agreed to ban fur farming by 2025.

The three parties had been locked in negotiations since January 2nd  and are now able to form a government. “Regjeringsplattformen” is an agreement on governing principles between the three parties and a fur farming ban is officially a part of the agreement.

This is an excellent, if surprising, outcome of the negotiations. Fur farming is one of the issues where the new governing parties have different positions: Venstre (The Liberal party) were firmly against fur farming, while Høyre (The Conservative Party) and Fremskrittspartiet (The Progress Party) had wanted to maintain the production but with, respectively, “strict demands on animal welfare” (H) and “a review of the regulations on animal welfare and discontinued subsidies” (FrP). There are voices against fur farming in Høyre and Fremskrittspartiet, but they are a minority.

There are 201 fur farms in Norway.  In 2017 there were 773,000 mink killed on Norwegian fur farms, as well as 140,000 foxes.

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.

Norway can now set an example to the other Scandinavian governments in 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.

Following a campaign by Respect for Animals, fur farming was banned in the UK in 2000 on the grounds of public morality. Fur factory farming has recently been banned in Holland, Germany, Croatia and Czech Republic.

The fur industry is spending huge amounts of money on self-promotion in a desperate bid to salvage its terrible reputation, but momentum is truly with the anti-fur movement as more and more countries ban fur farming and more and more retailers go officially fur free.





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