In August 2022, the European country of Malta banned both fur farming and the production of foie gras. Although there are no companies farming fur or producing foie gras in this Mediterranean island nation, the Legal Notice 187 2022 issued by the Ministry of Agriculture will prevent them from moving into the country from now on, after having been banned in other countries. However, the trade in either product is not prohibited.
The minister said, “Though such practices are not the norm in Malta, it is still crucial to prohibit them to ensure the protection of these animals.” Veggy Malta, a plant-based advocacy group, has said, “Whilst the Legal Notice does not ban the sale of foie gras or fur locally from any unscrupulous buyer they are a positive step in the right direction…These are the type of bold, progressive actions that need to be taken in favour of animals.”
Currently, 21 countries have already banned fur farms — or are in the process of phasing them out — of at least some key species. In particular, Austria, UK, Croatia, Slovenia, Slovakia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Serbia, Belgium, Republic of Macedonia, Czechia, Denmark, Hungary, Japan, the Netherlands, Luxemburg, Norway, Estonia, France, Ireland, Italy, and now Malta. Proposed legislation to phase out fur farming is being considered in Bulgaria, Lithuania, Montenegro, Poland, and Ukraine. Although most EU countries have banned fur farming now, there have been calls for an EU-level ban covering both the farms and the trade. The European Citizens’ Initiative “Fur Free Europe” has called on the EU to ban fur farming and farmed fur products from the European market.
Foie gras production is also banned in several countries, including Denmark, Germany, and the UK, but the import of this product has not been banned yet — despite the fact an attempt to ban it was recently blocked by Ministers in the UK.