Campaigners for a Fur Free Europe

European Parliament Group and Austrian Health Minister Make The Case for a “Fur Free Europe”

Over 400,000 EU citizens sign up to say no to fur farming


Strasbourg, 6 October, 2022 - Members of the European Parliament, from across the political divide, sent a strong message of support for ending fur farming across the EU.

MEPs voiced their support for the European Citizens’ Initiative (ECI) “Fur Free Europe" which calls for the EU to ban fur farming and the placement on the European market of farmed fur products.  

The ECI, launched by 80 NGOs including FOUR PAWS, the global animal welfare organisation, reached more than 400,000 signatures in less than five months.

In Strasbourg, the European Parliament Intergroup on the Welfare and Conservation of Animals held a dedicated meeting on “The case for a Fur Free Europe”. After an introduction from the President of the Intergroup Tilly Metz MEP (LU, Greens/EFA), a new report was launched on the reasons why we need to ban fur farming and the placement of farmed fur products on the European market from public health, legal, environmental and ethical perspectives.

Pierre Sultana, Director of the European Policy Office at FOUR PAWS, said: “Today, MEPs from across the political spectrum spoke with one voice calling for a fur free Europe. They join nearly half a million citizens who have already signed the ECI.

“We have also seen 15 EU Member States ban fur farming with many of them doing so over the past few years to tackle the moral, environmental and health problems brought by fur farming and this latest report shows that they are right to do so."

“It is now time for the European Commission to act decisively. The current revision of the Animal Welfare Legislation is the opportunity for the European Commission to present proposals for legal acts to achieve an EU-wide ban on both fur farming and sales.”

Pierre Sultana, Director of the European Policy Office at FOUR PAWS

Johannes Rauch, Austrian Federal Minister of Social Affairs, Health, Care and Consumer Protection intervened with a video message: “In my role as Minister of Health, I strongly push towards the realisation of the “One Health" approach. That means we must look at human health, animal health and environmental health as interlinked issues that strongly impact one another. I am convinced that we will have to fundamentally change this system of animal exploitation to avoid future pandemics.

“In order to make progress and live up to our moral standards and the responsible treatment of animals as sentient beings, I strongly urge all of you to support this common cause, support the ECI and make this step possible towards the goal of a fur free Europe”.


The ECI Fur Free Europe 

The report Fur Free Europe

The ECI Fur Free Europe was officially registered by the European Commission on 16/03/2022 and will run from 18/05/2022 for one year. The ECI was submitted by a group of 7 EU Member States.

Additional notes from the Intergroup: The presentation was followed by a partial screening of the documentary SLAY from the makers of the award-winning films Cowspiracy and What The Health. SLAY follows filmmaker Rebecca Cappelli’s journey around the world to uncover the dark side of the fashion industry: a harrowing story of greenwashing, mislabeling, and animal cruelty. SLAY provides an in-depth and eye-opening look into the realities of today’s fashion industry while pointing the way towards viable and sustainable alternatives.

“The suffering of animals in the fashion industry is greenwashed into oblivion while those skin industries are destroying the planet and harming people. SLAY aims to challenge the notion that animal skins are a fabric, and open people's eyes to the dark realities behind some of the most sought after skins in fashion”, said Rebecca Cappelli, Director and Producer of the film.

SLAY digital booklet

Watch the SLAY documentary

The 2021 request to end fur farming in the EU from Twelve Member States 


Act now to ban fur for good


Sign here

FOUR PAWS is the global animal welfare organisation for animals under direct human influence, which reveals suffering, rescues animals in need and protects them. Founded in 1988 in Vienna by Heli Dungler, the organisation advocates for a world where humans treat animals with respect, empathy and understanding. FOUR PAWS’ sustainable campaigns and projects focus on companion animals including stray dogs and cats, farm animals and wild animals – such as bears, big cats, orangutans and elephants – kept in inappropriate conditions as well as in disaster and conflict zones. With offices in Australia, Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Germany, Kosovo, the Netherlands, Switzerland, South Africa, Thailand, Ukraine, the UK, the USA and Vietnam as well as sanctuaries for rescued animals in twelve countries, FOUR PAWS provides rapid help and long-term solutions. 

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