A former fur boss has come out in support of a U.K fur ban after saying industry footage made him cry.
Mike Moser was the chief executive of the British Fur Trade Association (BFTA) - which promotes fur - for six years before leaving his job over animal suffering.
Moser has now joined the Mirror’s Fur Free Britain in a bid to ban fur sales in the U.K. While the production of fur is banned in the region, it is still legal to import the material.
Moser, who worked for the International Fur Federation before taking the position at BFTA, said he expects to be branded a 'hypocrite' for his U-turn on fur farming.
He told the Mirror: "I am 64 now. It is never too late to change. If people want to call me a hypocrite, that’s fine. But when the facts and the science changes, we all should be ready to change too."
Reasons for quitting
Moser added that a number of factors made him quit the job in January 2019. One was his labrador Barney, who died recently. He said: "At the time I would come home and I really started to adore this dog.
"It then hit me how inconsistent this was. One one hand, showering this dog with love and then going to work to defend the practices of caging mink and foxes, some of whom weren’t that smaller than a dog, for their entire lives.
"I said to myself, how can I hand-on-heart say these things? It really troubled me. That was the beginning of me realising that I could no longer do this."
Watching a joint investigation between the Daily Mirror and Humane Society International/UK (HSI/UK) earlier this year was a major factor, with the footage showing animals being skinned alive and brutally killed.
Moser said: "Watching the footage reduced me to tears. I couldn’t speak afterwards. I genuinely do not understand what it takes in a human being to do those things in the name of fur. There is no way you can defend that."
He added: "We shouldn’t only care about animals we keep at home. Any animal that has awareness about its own existence has the possibility to experience suffering as a result of its environment. In a responsible society, shouldn’t we be looking at all the products we consume and asking questions about their origins and their environmental cost."
'Hideous, heartless reality'
Speaking about the investigation footage in a statement sent to Plant Based News, Claire Bass, executive director of HSI/UK said: "Behind the PR spin of the fur trade, this is the hideous, heartless reality they don’t want you to see. Raccoon dogs driven mad with boredom in their pitifully small wire cages, foxes repeatedly smashed over the head with a metal bar in front of their terrified cage mates, animals skinned alive so that the fur trade can sell consumers the lie of luxury.
"I am sickened and heartbroken by what our investigators witnessed on these cruel fur farms, but not surprised. Every designer putting fur on the catwalk, every retailer putting fur on its shop shelves, and every consumer putting fur in their wardrobe, is helping to pay for this shameful misery."
'It needs to stop'
She added: "It needs to stop, and the UK is now in a unique position to take action by banning fur sales. This – and every - investigation into the fur trade shows that fur is not glamorous, it’s grotesque, it’s cruelty not couture, and it’s time for the UK to stop trading in such horrors.
"In taking control of our markets and laws post-Brexit the government will have the power - and the moral duty - to send a clear message that the UK will no longer tolerate the cruel fur trade. Cross party support for a UK ban on fur sales is already strong, and we now need a sign that the government will act."