California has become the first U.S. state to ban all production and sale of animal fur products.
The State Governor, Gavin Newsom signed the bill that will make it illegal to make, sell and even donate any new item made using animal fur starting in 2023.
The bill excludes used items, taxidermy products, fur taken with a hunting license and fur used by Native American tribes for religious purposes.
Violators of the ban will face fines of up to $500, or even $1,000 for repeat offences.
Along with the fur ban, Newsom also approved a ban on the use of most animals in circuses. Exceptions will be made for dogs and horses.
According to the governor in a statement, he said;
California is a leader when it comes to animal welfare, and today that leadership includes banning the sale of fur.
But we are doing more than that.
We are making a statement to the world that beautiful wild animals like bears and tigers have no place on trapeze wires or jumping through flames.
While animal rights groups have cheered the measure as a stand against inhumane practices, the proposal was vigorously opposed by the billion-dollar US fur industry. The Fur Information Council of America has already condemned the ban as being part of a “radical vegan agenda” and has threatened a court challenge.
The law could mark a significant blow to the fur industry that makes products from animals including mink, chinchillas, rabbits and other animals. The US retail fur industry brought in $1.5bn in sales in 2014, the most recent data available from the Fur Information Council.
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