Mink farming in Ireland is set to be outlawed by Easter.
The ban on fur farming through the Animal Health & Welfare Bill is part of the Programme for Government and was listed as priority bill two weeks ago when the legislative programme was published.
Outlawing fur farming is being listed for pre-legislative scrutiny to enable the Oireachtas agriculture committee to examine the bill before it formally goes through the legislative process.
The Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine is reported to have already written to mink farms to tell them that the legislation to curb the practice would be moving forward this year.
There are currently three fur farms in Ireland, situated in Donegal, Laois and Kerry with around 120,000 mink being farmed.
The Department of Agriculture had previously announced, there would be a phasing out of fur farming to allow the operators time to wind down and give employees opportunities to find alternative roles.
The original decision in June 2019, to close fur farms was agreed by the Cabinet. However, the draft legislation was not passed and lapsed with the dissolution of the previous Government.
There has been a widespread shift in Irish people’s attitudes towards fur farming. Veterinary evidence has suggested that banning mink farming was the correct and humane course of action and would help augment Ireland’s reputation as an animal welfare-focused country.