Call to Revisit Plans to Ban Foie Gras and Fur Imports in the UK

Call to Revisit Plans to Ban Foie Gras and Fur Imports in the UK

...By Jack Sylva for TDPel Media.

A Tory MP has urged the UK government to reconsider its plans to ban the imports of foie gras and fur.


Despite strong public support, the government had previously delayed the implementation of the ban.

The MP argues that if these products are considered cruel and prohibited for production in the UK, they should also be banned from importation to avoid supporting cruelty.

Delayed Legislation and Revisiting the Issue

The UK government faced criticism last year when it postponed the ban on foie gras and fur imports, despite widespread public support for such a measure.

While the Department for Environment and Agriculture (DEFRA) denied claims of shelving the legislation, Henry Smith, MP for Crawley, who introduced a bill to ban trophy hunting imports, believes it is crucial for the government to reconsider and move forward with the legislation promptly.

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He emphasizes the need to align import policies with the UK’s stance on animal cruelty.

Public Opinion and Actions by Retailers

There is strong public sentiment in favor of banning foie gras imports.


In response to public pressure, Fortnum & Mason’s, a renowned retailer, discontinued the sale of foie gras in 2021.

Additionally, King Charles banned the food from all royal estates upon ascending the throne.

The combination of public opinion, cross-party support, and actions taken by retailers demonstrates the growing consensus against importing these products.

Legislative Progress and Broader Animal Welfare Issues

Henry Smith’s legislation, supported by notable figures like Gary Lineker and Dame Joanna Lumley, was passed by MPs and is currently undergoing the legislative process in the House of Lords.

The bill aims to protect thousands of species, including lions, elephants, rhinos, and polar bears, following the Ivory Act introduced in the previous year.

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Smith believes that leaving the European Union allows the UK to act unilaterally on animal welfare issues and expresses the desire to extend progress to other areas.


The call to revisit the plans to ban foie gras and fur imports reflects the ongoing debate around animal welfare and ethical consumption.

The delay in implementing the ban has drawn criticism, but the support from various quarters, including public opinion and actions by retailers, highlights a growing consensus against these imports.


Opponents of the ban, primarily those involved in trophy hunting, argue that it supports conservation efforts and benefits local communities.

However, conservation experts refute these claims, citing the negative impact of trophy hunting on biodiversity and human-wildlife conflict.

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They emphasize the need to abandon such practices and view a ban on trophy imports as a progressive step that can encourage other countries to follow suit.

The Department for Environment, Food & Rural Affairs states that the UK already has strict animal welfare standards and is committed to gathering evidence to inform decisions on these issues.

This indicates that the government recognizes the importance of public sentiment and is actively engaging with stakeholders to ensure informed decision-making.

The ongoing discussions surrounding the ban on foie gras and fur imports reflect the complex considerations involved in balancing consumer demand, animal welfare, and ethical practices.

The outcome of this deliberation will likely have implications for the broader conversation around responsible consumption and the treatment of animals in trade.

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