Animals provide us with a wide range of important products which is why we have a responsibility to make sure, that their welfare is exceptional. The issue of animal rights is very important to many people around the world. So, when you look at the issue regarding natural fur and the assumption that it is a threat to animal rights, it can be a good idea to do some research about whether it is ethical to use and wear natural fur. In this case it is really a matter of what it takes to become ethically correct to use animal products in general. In a study of the sealing industry in Canada it has been proven, that the majority of the public feel, that it is ethically correct to use the skin from animals, as long as following conditions are obeyed. The first condition is that the survival of the species should not be threatened. This is really about sustainability and that there is no future in using up the resources we need to survive. That is why multiple actions have been made to secure the survival of the species and one of these actions are regulation. Through regulation, the state decides in every country which animals are allowed to be hunted and when, to make sure, that all animal species and crops get the best living standards and cannot extinct each other.
Another condition is, that there should not be any unnecessary pain and cruelty in connection with the killing. This is a very important matter for the fur industry, and it is taken very seriously. The farm animals get good nutrition and care, so the fur can live up to and compete with the high standards on the market. These good conditions that the animals have are also shown to the public at the popular Open Farming events in Denmark. This way the public get a chance to see that animal welfare is present in the fur industry when it comes to the farm animals, like mink in Denmark and fox in Finland. The fur from the other animals like rabbit, sheep, cow and reindeer are biproducts from the meat industry. This means, that the entire animal is used and not just the meat. This gives a minimum of waste. The other animals like raccoon and zebra are wild animals that are captured in traps or dies naturally. The traps that are used for the raccoons are approved by specialized authorities, that ensure that the animal experiences less possible stress and pain during the catching.
But how do you make sure that every fur farmer lives up to the strong demands on animal welfare and how do you make sure that the wild animals who live freely in nature are secured as well? The fur business has taken initiative to introduce control of the animal welfare at the farms and this initiative is called WelFur. WelFur is a scientific certification system that bases its protocol on 4 principles; Good housing, Good feeding, Good health and Appropriate behavior. The many farmers are measured and evaluated and gets a good basis for documenting high animal welfare at the farms. The project takes place all over Europe and meets the fashion industry and the consumers demands for transparency and documentation of the animal welfare in the fur business. It is the trade organization FurEurope that is behind this initiative in cooperation with scientists from 7 universities in Europe.