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‘We hope that from January, fur farming will be consigned to the history books’

A bill that will make fur farming illegal in Ireland, has reached the second stage of the Dáil.

The government approved the final version of the Animal Health and Welfare (Miscellaneous Provisions) Bill 2021, which is draft legislation to prohibit fur farming in Ireland, on October 19th, 2021.

Minister Pippa Hackett has welcomed the “important and progressive” piece of legislation, which she claims “the vast majority of the general public supports”.

She said her party has “fought long and hard” for the measure.

In a video on her Facebook page on November 4th, 2021, she said:

“I know that fur farming was once socially acceptable. But, there is now a broad consensus among many experts, both veterinary and scientific, that certain animals should not be farmed for their fur or skin.”

“There are serious animal welfare concerns, which simply cannot be mitigated. Of course, there are serious societal concerns too.”

“We are hoping the bill will pass before the end of the year, and that from January 2022, fur farming in Ireland will be consigned to the history books.”

“So, well done to all involved. It is a good day for animal welfare and another good day for the greens in government.”

Previously, she said there are three active farms in the state that breed and rear mink for pelting for the fur industry.

She explained that these will be closed under the new plan.

The senator claimed the fur farms “cannot provide” for the five freedoms of animal welfare. She said this is particularly in relation to the need to express normal behaviours.

These are freedom from:

  • Hunger and thirst;
  • Discomfort;
  • Pain, injury, and disease;
  • To express normal and natural behaviour;
  • Fear and distress.
Compensation scheme

Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine, Charlie McConalogue, when introducing the bill to the house on November 4th, 2021, explained that his department would provide a compensation scheme, covering the losses and costs directly resulting from prohibiting fur farming in Ireland.

He said these costs include:

  • Redundancy payments to employees;
  • Certain professional fees;
  • Mink disposal and clean-up costs;
  • ThDe demolition of mink buildings.
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