In March, the Republic of Ireland rejected a ban on fur farming proposed by that country’s Green Party.
The Republic of Ireland is home to six mink farms that export about $2.5 million worth of fur annually. Fur farming was banned in Northern Ireland effective January 1, 2003, as part of the United Kingdom’s ban on fur farming. A the time the ban went into effect, there were no operating fur farms in the country.
Republic of Ireland Junior Agriculture Minister John Browne told Ireland On-Line that the government felt that existing regulation of fur farms was sufficient, though it was willing to continue to examine welfare-related issues presented by fur farms,
I am prepared to keep the position under ongoing review in the light of developments.
I would consider introducing a provision in the forthcoming legislation into animal health and welfare which would require the extending of a licensing requirement to all enterprises engaged in farming animals for their fur.
Of course the Greens want complete abolition of the practice, as Green Party leader Trevor Sargent told Ireland On-Line,
Our intention is to end this needless and cruel practice via the Fur Farming (Prohibition) Bill 2004.
When the bill finally came up for a vote in the Dail, Government parties carried the day defeating the proposed ban by a vote of 67 to 50.
A transcript of the debate between pro- and anti-fur farm forces in the Dail can be read here.
Govt says no to fur farming ban. Ireland On-line, March 22, 2005.