New Law Makes California The First State To Ban Fur Products

by Sarah Bregel
Originally Published: 
Christian Vierig/Getty

The law banning new fur products will go into effect in California in 2023

The Governor of California, Gavin Newsom, just signed a new law which institutes a statewide ban on animal fur products. This new law makes California the first state with a law banning fur, citing animal cruelty as the sole reason. It won’t be in effect until January 2023 but when it is, it will prohibit the sale and manufacturing of all new fur products.

There are some restrictions on the ban, however. It won’t apply to used fur products or fur products used for religious purposes. It also won’t apply to fur used for traditional tribal, cultural or spiritual purposes by Native American tribe members. Some products will remain legal like leather and sheepskin, but all new fur will be banned under the law.

The assembly member who introduced the bill was Democratic member, Laura Friedman. It was first introduced back in December of 2018. Friedman said that California has been known as a “world leader in animal welfare” and “will not be complicit in unnecessary cruelty towards animals solely for the sake of fur.” In September, the bill passed the state legislature.

Several California cities like Berkeley, Los Angeles, San Francisco, and West Hollywood, already had similar bans on fur in place locally. But with this new law into effect, the entire state of California will be banned from selling fur products.

One of the bill’s backers is, of course, The Humane Society of the U.S. who applauded the state of California and condemned the fur industry yesterday, saying, “The fur industry causes the suffering and death of more than 100 million animals worldwide each year, and animals on fur factory farms are forced to live in cramped, wire-bottom cages, deprived of the ability to engage in natural behaviors, before being cruelly killed by gassing or electrocution,” the statement said. Animal welfare groups have been advocating for such laws for a very long time, so this is a huge victory for those groups.

This wasn’t the only animal welfare bill that was signed into law. The governor also signed laws banning most animals from circus shows with the exception of cats, dogs, and horses. It also doesn’t apply to rodeo shows.

While those who advocate against animal cruelty are surely thrilled by these new laws, there will likely be some who don’t agree with the move. Residents will no longer be able to sell or make clothing, shoes or handbags from fur in just a couple of years. If you’re a lover of animals, however, it’s hard to argue that this is pretty good thing that’s likely to catch on elsewhere.

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