ILLEGAL FUR TRADE
Response from Sir Peter Bottomley
Thank you to all those who have recently contacted me about the fur trade and the upcoming Westminster Hall debate on the extending of the regulations on the sale of Fur. I shall indeed endeavour to attend and listen to my colleagues express their concerns on the issue.
I support the highest standards of animal welfare so I am pleased to note that the importation of fur products is tightly regulated. It is illegal to import furs derived from cats or dogs, or products made from them; in addition the fur and skin of endangered animals or fish cannot be imported without a valid permit.
Meanwhile, under European legislation it is prohibited to import furs or fur products from 13 wild animal species originating in countries where they are caught in the wild by leg-hold traps, or trapping methods that do not meet international standards of humane trapping. Strict rules are in also place in the European Union to ensure that animals kept for fur production are kept, trapped and slaughtered humanely. Once the UK has withdrawn from the EU it will be for the Government to consider future policies, taking into account the outcome of exit negotiations, and I will be sure to lobby for stricter rules that extend the controls and regulations to all animals involved in the fur trade.
I understand this is an issue that means a lot to a number of people and I share their concerns. Many of you enjoy our weekly market on Montague Street every Wednesday and will, like me, urge our local traders to ensure the items of clothing they purchase wholesale to sell include only faux-fur. A shocking investigation by the BBC a few months ago found that many traders in Camden Town’s famous market were indeed selling real fur advertised as fake, with nearly all traders believing they were only selling faux-fur. This is a situation we will hope to avoid locally and I believe that more regulation and checks are needed to help retailers and consumers have confidence that the items they have purchased are legal and ethically sourced.
I thank you again for bringing this matter to my attention and I encourage you to get in touch if you wish to discuss this any further.