Milestone Decision to End Fur Fashion

Israel is first country in the world eliminating the sale of fur.


Israel, Fur
Fur coats hanging in a store.

(Whiteaster /

Fur is out of fashion. At least in one Middle Eastern country this is more than just a new trend. Israel is the first country in the world to legislate banning fur sales.

When the new law was introduced in October 2020, it wasn’t a sure bet that it would pass according to the Jerusalem Post. After all, animal lovers have been pushing for banning the fur trade for over a decade.

But a compromise was made that allowed special permits for the shtreimels, fur hats, that are worn by some ultra-Orthodox that allowed the proposal to pass. The new law will go into effect in six months.

This compassionate law was heralded by the environmental protection minister Gila Gamliel. “The fur industry causes the deaths of hundreds of millions of animals worldwide, and inflicts indescribable cruelty and suffering,” she said as she signed the law on June 9, 2021.

“Using the skin and fur of wildlife for the fashion industry is immoral and is certainly unnecessary. Animal fur coats cannot cover the brutal murder industry that makes them. Signing these regulations will make the Israeli fashion market more environmentally friendly and far kinder to animals.”

The move was supported by 86 percent of Israel’s population according to the Jerusalem Post. The country also has a large number of vegetarians and vegans and Tel Aviv is one of the most vegan-friendly cities in the world.

PETA, the animal rights organization, hailed this move and wrote on Twitter that the new law is a historic victory that will protect minks, rabbits, foxes and other animals that are killed just for their fur.

The UK was the first country to ban fur farming in 2003 but continued to allow its importation and sale according to Israel21. This was followed by other European countries including the Netherlands in 2020.

In 2017, Gucci was one of the first fashion houses to end the use of fur in its creations. This was part of a groundbreaking partnership with the Fur Free Alliance; a group of other like-minded fashion designers who vowed to stop using fur including: Armani, Hugo Boss and Stella McCarthy. 

The rest of the industry took notice and the 2018 Fashion Week in London banned the use of fur on their runways.

While international support for banning the sale of fur was steadily gaining traction, the first major legislation was enacted in the US state of undefined in 2019 that will take effect in 2023. There already were prohibitions in several cities in the state.

This law makes it illegal to manufacture, sell, or display any fur items in California but it makes exemptions for religious reasons or traditional practices by Native Americans.

These laws will play a large role in alleviating animal suffering in an outdated and no longer necessary industry. Hopefully more states and countries will follow suit and end the farming, importation, and sale of fur in their borders.   

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