Victory! Ann Arbor, Michigan, Becomes The First U.S. City In The Midwest To Ban The Sale Of Fur
The city council for Ann Arbor, Michigan, voted unanimously to ban the sale of new fur products, making it the first city in a fur-producing state to do so. The ordinance includes a one-year phase out and exemptions for used fur and pelts from cows, sheep, and deer, as well as fur used by tribal communities.
“Ann Arbor has now become the Midwest leader in the fight against the fur industry,” said Molly Tamulevich, Michigan state director for the Humane Society of the United States (HSUS), in a statement. “Cities should rightfully align their laws with the values of their constituents, and it’s clear the people of Ann Arbor care about animals and want nothing to do with fur.”
According to 2017 Economic Census Data, Michigan’s fur retail sales were a little over $20 million, which represents 3.5% of all U.S. fur sales and ranks the state sixth in the country. Michigan’s fur sales account for .01% of the state’s total retail sales.
In 2019, the U.S. Department of Agriculture reported that Michigan produced 65,000 mink pelts, making the state the seventh highest fur producer in the United States. Last year, the number of mink killed for their fur in the U.S. dropped 49% to 1.4 million, the lowest number on record.
In October 2020, mink on a fur farm in Michigan became infected with SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19, after it was reported that several of the mink had died. Similar outbreaks have occurred on more than 430 mink fur farms in Wisconsin, Utah, Oregon, Canada, and Europe. More than 20 million mink were tragically killed in response to the outbreaks, and several countries have suspended or completely ended mink fur production.
Ann Arbor city council member Jeff Hayner said in a previous hearing, “Maybe 100 years ago we had a need for this kind of thing. The times have changed. Our environment has changed. Our relationships with the environment needs to change.”
California banned fur sales in 2019 following similar measures in Los Angeles, San Francisco, Berkeley, and West Hollywood. Wellesley and Weston, Massachusetts, have since voted to end fur sales, and the Massachusetts legislature is now considering a fur sales ban of its own. Internationally, Israel banned fur sales earlier this year, and the UK is looking to do the same.
In 2021, Neiman Marcus, Saks Fifth Avenue, Canada Goose, Valentino, Oscar de la Renta, Tory Burch, Alexander McQueen, and Balenciaga announced fur-free policies joining top fashion brands and retailers Macy’s, Bloomingdale’s, Nordstrom, Prada, Gucci, Armani, Versace, Michael Kors, DKNY, Burberry, and many more.
Let’s urge more cities to Go Fur-Free & Make Compassion The Fashion!
You can help all animals and our planet by choosing compassion on your plate and in your glass. #GoVeg