The fur industry has been lobbying the Serbian government ruthlessly, in a desperate attempt to keep the right to breed chinchillas in shocking fur farm conditions and avoid another embarrassing defeat. A public session has been arranged at the Serbian parliament on Tuesday 5 June to debate extending the proven cruelty of chinchilla fur factory farming. Shockingly, in an affront to the most basic principles of democracy, animal protection organisations has been prevented from attending the ‘public’ session.
Serbia has passed legislation banning fur farming which comes into effect in January 2019. The ban is now at severe risk.
Chinchillas are the only animals kept for fur in Serbia. The intense battery cage system used on fur farms deprives chinchillas from the opportunity to express their natural behaviour – such as running and jumping – and causes severe welfare problems. International studies have shown behavioral disorders, such as stereotypies, pelt-biting and infant mortality, are highly common on chinchilla fur farms. Learn more about welfare problems on chinchilla fur farms.
The public session about the fur farming ban is scheduled just two days prior to the Make Fur History expo, that will take place in Belgrade on Thursday, June 7. The exhibition – that was launched in the European Parliament on January 23 and is now touring Europe – invites lawmakers and stakeholders to discuss the negative impact of fur farming on animals, the environment and local communities and shows the urgency for more national bans. Respect for Animals will be attending the event as part of the campaign to end chinchilla suffering at the hands of the barbaric fur industry.
With a 10-year phase-out period, Serbian fur farmers have been given the opportunity to transition to a more economically stable and sustainable industry. With less than one year left before the transitional period runs out, any change to the previously agreed upon legislation would raise serious questions regarding the Serbian legislative process.
We have already written to Serbian politicians and a joint letter from the international Fur Free Alliance has been delivered to the Serbian parliament.
As part of the Fur Free Alliance, Respect for Animals urges the Serbian government to stay true to its legislative commitment to ban the farming of animals for their fur, and save sentient beings from a cruel life and death.