Statement from The People's Government of Suning County, Hebei Province, China, on the untruthful Report "Fun Fur" from Swiss Animal Protection Organization

Recently, Swiss Animal Protection Organization distributed a report named "Fun Fur", with video footage, which gave an untruthful and unfair judgement on our county's fur animal farming and processing industries. The report affected the county's fur industry seriously and did harm to the image of fur farms and processing industries. We are making this statement in order to provide the truth.

The fur industry is the main industry in our county. The County Government, the departments concerned, and also the enterprises give the highest respect to this special animal breeding and management. We support the rules of protection and welfare, try the best to learn and spread the world's latest techniques of production, slaughter and processing. For further and constantly healthy progress of the fur industry, in August 2003, the Quality and Technology Supervising Department of Cang Zhou City distributed "Special Animals Farming and Processing Standardization" which was based on the standards of Finland and Norway where there is a developed fur farming industry and regulations aimed at "raising efficiency and animal welfare" in production techniques. In terms of farming, the "Standardization" gives exact regulations on the raising conditions, cage sizes, food's nutrition, and disease prevention. The preparation and distribution of the "standardization" is not only helpful for the animals' growth and reproduction, but also raises the skin quality, and was therefore widely accepted by fur farms (families), where problems of abuse have not existed at all. In terms of slaughter, the "Standardization" sets out two kinds of method: killing by injection, and killing by electrocution. Rules concerning the application of these two methods are also set out. The above two methods are easy to apply and can also increase the production rate, ensure the quality of the skins, and raise the income of fur breeding families and enterprises. They are therefore widely welcomed and actively adopted by fur breeding families and farms. As we all know, the final aim of fur animal farming is to obtain high quality skins; good standards of production and slaughter are the key links to obtaining skins with high quality. Skinning an animal alive, a practice claimed in "Fun Fur", will in fact bring low efficiency and also damage the skin's quality. It will also bring harm to the operator. All the people know that skinning alive is not only unimaginable, but also not practicable during the course of production. Therefore, people simply do not understand the allegations made in the report "Fun Fur" and the video footage materials.

To take good care of the animals is a fundamental requirement for the fur farming industry's development. We sincerely welcome international animal protection organizations that offer active and creative advice to our county's fur industry. However, we strongly reject some organizations which claim an individual problem which is without basis, even to the extent of producing and widely distributing an untrue report. We hope that the Swiss Animal Protection Organization can respect the truth and will stop their unjustified reflection on our county's fur industry.

22 April 2005

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