Real Fur Sales

Part of the debate – in Westminster Hall at 4:53 pm on 14th September 2021.

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Photo of Emma Hardy Emma Hardy Labour, Kingston upon Hull West and Hessle 4:53 pm, 14th September 2021

It is a pleasure to be part of this debate, Ms Rees, and I thank Christian Wakeford for securing it. I will be quite brief, as the UK can be proud of its extremely high animal welfare standards and the fact that we have banned fur farms. I intervened on the hon. Member for Bury South to talk about the opportunity we have with the trade deals coming up to not just stop the importation of fur, but to maintain those animal standards in all our imports. I would press on the Minister the need when making these trade deals to say that we should not have any reduction in animal welfare standards—be that in fur, in meat production or in any way whatsoever.

I am pleased that the hon. Member for Bury South mentioned that consumer choice is very important. However, sometimes consumers mistakenly buy fur products because they are incorrectly labelled, and because they cannot clearly identify where the products come from. He made the point that we know the country that our meat has come from, but we do not have the same knowledge with fur products; that is something else I would encourage the Government to look at. There are really high-quality synthetic alternatives, and if they were clearly labelled and made available, I think consumers would certainly want to choose them.

The evidence suggests that the great British public are overwhelmingly against fur farming and that they want to see high standards of animal welfare maintained. The opinion polls show that they think that fur farming is absolutely unacceptable. I conclude by saying to the Minister that I would like see this commitment to animal welfare reflected in the trade deals the Government reach with other countries.