Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Fox Production Banned in Denmark

From my friend in the fur industry~

Fox Production Banned in Denmark
On Friday 29th May the Danish Parliament passed a law to ban the farming of foxes, on “ethical” grounds, despite the strong arguments put up by the Danish Fur Breeders Association over many years. Please see a statement issued by Kopenhagen Fur attached. The farming of foxes will be phased out over 15 years for farmers who farm foxes as their main activity, and within 7 years for those who also farm other species. The Danish Parliament did not vote for financial compensation. Danish Fur Breeders Association will now mount a legal challenge to the ban.
The Danish parliament questions people's right to keep animals.

After a few decades of debate on fox breeding in Denmark, it now appears that a majority in parliament will allow fox breeders to continue the current production until 2023. This is the status after parliament’s decision of a bill on banning fox breeding. Taking into account the level of the politicians' handling of the fox question, Danish Fur Breeders Association describes this result as fantastic - in the original sense of the word. The past year or so politicians have assessed three alternatives: 1) An immediate prohibition with compensation for expropriation to farmers, 2) A phase-out in 15 years and 3) A revised recommendation on fur farming based on facts. Danish Fur Breeders Association has obviously worked actively for model 3, where we have submitted specific proposals and drawn attention to the professional knowledge and research that exist in this area. The association has repeatedly suggested that experts should be allowed to make a specific proposal for future legislation. All statements and answers to parliamentary questions from the Food Committee (see, documents re. L80) point unequivocally to the fact that it is possible to define housing systems and management routines for farmed foxes that ensure that the welfare of farmed foxes is just as good as the welfare of other farmed animals.
However, it has long been clear that a parliamentary majority did not wish to take account of the factual arguments and knowledge, but would rather build on a strong Disney-dominated view of what animals need. But then it probably also applies to chickens, pigs and canaries? Must human relations to these animals also be phased out?
With a ban on fox breeding the politicians adopt the winding-up of a business, but at the same time recognize - with the law coming into force 15 years from now – that the very same business cannot be closed down for factual arguments on animal welfare, because in this case the production would have to be closed down with immediate effect.
Populism and lack of consistency in the logic of so-called animal friends’ and politicians' handling of animal welfare and ethics are striking. This is disclosed in a much discussed report on eating cat (featured in the magazine of the school of journalism in 2008), and COOP's magazine, Samvirke (juni/2008), which featured a whole theme with examples that legislators’ in misunderstood goodness -- and attempts to appeal to voters - have come out wrong. Similarly, the President of the Animal Ethics Council, Professor Peter Sand√łe has been quoted for warning against “treating everything like Bambi” in the daily newspaper, Politiken.
After the decision in parliament the trade will take the matter to court since the parliament’s infringement is unjustified, disproportionate and, moreover, in flagrant breach of EU rules. Therefore, the affected farmers must live with uncertainty for several more years to come.
It is a serious problem for the entire population if parliament makes laws based on emotions and narrow vegan ethics - rather than on the ethical basis which 99% of the population acknowledges, namely that people may use animals and products derived from animals. If this principle is now waived what is the next? Phasing out animals or products such as eggs, silk, chops, hamsters, leather, yogurt, insulin or cage birds? With such politics parliament will be at odds with a fundamental point of view of virtually the entire population.

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