LONDON – UK MPs from the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs Committee said online stores such as Amazon and Not On The High Street should be doing more to stop the sale of faux fur products that contain animal fur during a parliamentary debate.
Committee chairman Neil Parish said UK consumers have a right go know what they are buying and suggested retailers should take greater responsibility about the products they retail.
Parish said: “UK customers deserve to know what they are buying online, particularly when ordering products containing real fur that are advertised as faux fur.
“Many individuals have ethical, environmental, or personal reasons for choosing faux fur. Any customer should be able to have confidence that there are adequate safeguards ensuring that products are as advertised.”
Campaign group the Humane Society International used the debate to welcome steps taken by Not on the Highstreet but said concerns remained over Amazon’s commitment.
Their UK director Claire Bass said:“We still have concerns about the checks and balances Amazon has in place to ensure that its marketplace sellers adhere to their no-fur policy. Today, with just a brief search, HSI was still able to find several items described on Amazon UK as fake fur but where the photos show real fur items.
“Amazon UK has already cleaned up its fur act to some extent, but it’s got a way to go before customers can buy fake fur on Amazon with confidence.”
Fur farming has been banned in the UK since 2000, but imports of fur from some animals, such as fox, rabbit and mink, are permitted under tight controls.
The committee launched its inquiry into real fur being sold as fake fur earlier this year after a spate of cases in High Street shops including Tesco, Fatface and Boots.
A petition to ban the sale of animal fur in the UK recently reached more than 100,000 signatures, triggering a debate on the issue in Parliament on 4 June. Fur farming has been banned in Britain since 2003 but it is still legal to import fur from other countries to be sold in the UK.