The UK has some of the highest animal welfare standards in the world and it is right that we continue to raise the bar.
I know that ministers are committed to legislation to ban the import of hunting trophies from thousands of species. This will be one of the toughest bans in the world, and goes beyond the Government’s manifesto commitment, meaning that the UK will be leading the way in protecting endangered animals and helping to strengthen and support long-term conservation. I understand that this will be brought forward as soon as parliamentary time allows.
Regarding foie gras, I am aware that the production of force-fed foie gras raises welfare concerns. This practice is already banned in England and Wales under the Animal Welfare Act 2006. I understand that ministers are now able to consider any further steps that could be taken in relation to foie gras that is produced overseas using force feeding practices. The Government is working to build a clear evidence base to inform decisions on the import or sale of foie gras.
Finally, I know that fur farming has been banned in the UK for 20 years and there are already restrictions on some skin and fur products which may never be legally imported into the UK. The Government’s call for evidence to seek views and evidence on the current fur sector will be used to inform future decisions on the fur trade. I understand that ministers are reviewing the evidence gathered and I look forward to reading the response when it is published.