A bill which has received unanimous support from Isreali politicians during its first reading, and which according to a nationwide poll is backed by 79% of the Israeli public, has had its final vote delayed amid scaremongering from the fur industry.
The bill, if approved, would be the first of its kind in the world, banning both production and trade in fur. This is in contrast to the law in countries such as the UK, where despite a ban on the farming of fox and mink for fur, sales of fur products have steadily increased over the past decade, shooting up by 169%.
The launch of ADI’s investigation into the farmed fur industry highlights the dangers of banning the production of fur, but not the trade. Over 40% of fur sales in the UK are sourced from Finland, where the footage was shot. It shows that both European regulations and industry accreditation schemes have completely failed to safeguard animal welfare, and reveals the truth behind the spin of the fur and fashion industries – that animals used to produce fur live a wretched, miserable life of physical and psychological suffering, pain and disease. ADI’s ‘Bloody Harvest – the real cost of fur’ video and report, recently launched in Israel to coincide with the debate and distributed to the Knesset Committee discussing the ban, has lent further weight to the mounting body of evidence pointing to the necessity of a ban. It also counters claims by the fur industry that there are high welfare standards on fur farms.
The proposed ban, which the International Anti-Fur Coalition are strongly advocating, would affect all farming and processing, import, export and sale of fur from all animal species that aren’t already included within the meat industry. It would, however, include a religious exemption allowing the Hassidic Jewish community to wear hats which use fur – an exemption the pro-fur lobby are using this to incite unrest within the legislative body.
Generating fear in politicians is a tactic frequently employed by powerful industries to disrupt and undermine the democratic political process. During the revision of EC Directive 86/609 on the use of animals in experiments, the powerful pharmaceutical industries spread sexed-up claims that improving animal welfare would be economically damaging, despite overwhelming scientific and economic evidence to the contrary; in Israel, it is the turn of the fur industry to ignore the facts and attempt to mislead the Hassidic Jewish community to believe they will experience discrimination under such a the proposed ban – assertions which are completely unsubstantiated.
The Israeli government, however, remain supportive of the ban, and ADI is hoping for a positive result when the vote is cast.
ADI’s Fur Stop campaign has launched around Europe; the exposure of the appalling level of suffering in fur farms has shocked the public and gained much support from the media, politicians and celebrities. ADI’s campaign will continue to raise awareness of this issue, and we are urging supporters to distribute their pictures and videos to highlight the horrors behind the fabrications of the fashion and fur industries.