The IFF Sustainable Use and Ecosystems Management working group met in Copenhagen on Friday 6 February. The meeting was well attended and chaired by IFF CEO Mark Oaten. Among topics discussed were involvement with third party organisations (such as the IUCN, CITED and FACE), the effort to support further co-operation between Russia and Canada on trap testing and recent announcements by the European Commission on the Seal-product ban. In attendance were representatives from all four IFF regions and there was a frank but productive discussion about the best ways to preserve the Agreement on International Humane Trapping Standards (AIHTS) – a document that helps insulate the wild fur industry. Future meetings will likely follow the current format of being based around IFF Board/Council meetings and we encourage those with interest in learning more to contact Mark Boyle, Director of Standards and Welfare for IFF – MBOYLE@IFTF.COM.
On Saturday 7 February there was a meeting of the IFF Sustainable Use and Ecosystems Management seals sub-group chaired by David Hutton from Fur Institute of Canada. The main point of discussion was the European Commission’s recent response to the WTO decision on the seal-product ban. Unfortunately rather than opening the market, they have opted to remove one of the exemptions for marine resource management and signaled restricting the other Inuit exemption on ‘welfare’ grounds. Future lobbying work as well as independent Inuit activism were also discussed as next steps.
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