Investigation into fur farms in Finland 2013
New investigation into Finnish fur farms shows that animal cruelty continues
Finnish animal rights organization Oikeutta Eläimille has published yet another investigation into the fur industry in Finland. New material was first shown on Finnish television on 12.6.2013. The new material includes 13 fur farms, out of which 10 have been filmed both in 2011 and 2012.
Investigators found that all farms had similar problems. There were severe eye infections on all farms that bred arctic foxes. Other findings include open wounds, leg and ear injuries, stereotypical behavior, cannibalism, lame animals, gum infections, dead animals left in cages with living animal, etc.
Two of the farms are owned by fur farmers, who are board members of the Finnish fur breeder's association. One of the farmers, Marko Meriläinen, has been a spokesperson for the industry. His farm was filmed twice. Investigators filmed dead, partly eaten puppies, severe eye infections, a fox with a missing leg and other leg injuries, stereotypical behavior, bloody tails and other sick animals. You can watch a video from his farm here.
The Finnish parliament is voting on a citizens' initiative to ban fur farming soon. This vote will most likely take place 18.6.2013. Four different animal organisations, including Oikeutta eläimille, collected 70 000 signatures in favour of the ban last year.
New investigation into fur farms sends shock waves through Finland
- 10 % of Finnish fur farms investigated
Finnish animal rights organization Oikeutta Eläimille has published a new thorough investigation into the fur industry in Finland.
The investigation team visited 83 fur farms between spring and winter 2010. What they found is shocking: foxes with missing legs, puppies eating their dead siblings, terrible gashes, injuries, stereotypical behavior, cannibalism, lame animals, severe eye infections, gum infections, rotting corpses riddled with worms left in cages with living animals, the list goes on. This investigation is the most complete insight into the Finnish fur industry ever done.
Some of these farms are owned by people in very high positions within the industry. One farm belongs to the chairman of the Finnish Fur Sales, Jorma Kauppila. In his farm mink had open wounds, head wounds, missing ears, stereotypical behaviour and foxes had very bad eye infections. You can watch a video from his farm here.
Another farm belongs to the chairman of the Finnish Fur Breeder's association. His small fox farm was filmed twice. Foxes with eye infections, bent legs and ear problems were found. Watch a video from Ulf Enroth's farm here.
Two of the farms were owned by the vice chairman of the Finnish Fur Breeder's association. These farms were in shocking condition: animals with very bad gum and eye infections were found, as well as many with streotypical behaviour. One fox was dragging the back legs behind, another fox had a huge open wound (ear bitten off) and was limping a front leg. You can watch video's from two farms owned by Esa Rantakangas here and here .
Over 30 % of the investigated farms are certified. Certification is administered by farmers themselves to improve their public relations image. They claim this guarantees animal welfare.
In reality, the certified farms has the exact same problems as the uncertified farms. Sometimes even worse. One certified farm was visited by the investigation team three times in three months, where they documented that some of the animals, ill and with severe gum infection, were left untreated for the entire time.
Over 90 % of all farms investigated had animals with eye infections. Many of the animals could not even open their eyes. More than half of the farms had animals with ear injuries. Over 30 % of the farms had animals with open wounds.
Wounds and other injuries are very shocking. But the worst suffering is not so easy to see. Wild animals are kept in small cages for the whole of their short lives, without any possibility to act according to their natural behavior. This causes stress and mental suffering for the animals. These problems cannot be fixed with official inspections or control. Fox farming has already been banned for example in Sweden, because the law demanded that foxes should be able to dig and live in social groups, says Anne Nieminen from Oikeutta Eläimille.
The unethical treatment of animals on Finnish fur farms was brought to public attention as early as a year ago, when Oikeutta Eläimille published a similar investigation, showing the conditions on 32 farms. The situation has not improved over the year, despite the claims of the industry - quite the opposite. The investigations reveal that suffering, injuries and stereotypical behavior are an inseparable part of the fur industry, and a direct consequence of the conditions of the cage.
This industry, which crossly violates animal welfare, has already been condemned by the public. Now we need concrete action from politicians and from the people, so that we can get an end to this cruel practice, says Anne Nieminen.
Oikeutta Eläimille demands a full ban on fur farming.
Investigation includes fur farms from 35 municipalities from all around Finland. Most of the documented farms are from the western part of Finland where most of the farms are located.
Footage from all farms can be seen at www.tarhauskielto.fi
+358 (0)44 722 3352
info [at] oikeuttaelaimille.net
Animal abuse at fur farms supported by the Finnish Prime Minister:
How to use the site:
Click on "Kuvat ja videot" and you get to a map page, where you can zoom in and click on any pin you want, and you are able to visit the farm with us. You can also choose a farm from the list on the left. You will see video and pictures of that farm.
Click on "Etusivu" to get back to the front page.