When you buy fur, how do you know what you're getting? What is faux fur, and what are common violations of fur laws? Learn the basics of federal fur labeling laws.
Christine Mott is the former chair of the Animal Law Committee of the New York City Bar Association and is the chief legal officer at the International Council of Shopping Centers.
Christine Mott: Many retailers have been cited for falsely labeling or incorrectly labelling garments that perhaps are labeled as faux fur and in reality are containing real animal fur. Welcome to TalksOnLaw. My name is Christine Mott and I'll be giving you an overview of federal fur labeling laws.
Currently, federal law requires that all fur products, regardless of value, whether it's a little mitten with fur trim or full length fur coat, have to be labeled indicating that it contains real animal fur, indicating the species, and, if it is faux fur, has to be clearly labeled as faux fur. The most commonly mislabelled fur is raccoon dogs, which is actually, despite its name, not a raccoon but actually in the canine family. And this is the most commonly used type of fur, and it’s frequently produced in China under very poor humane conditions. Animals are typically skinned alive for their fur in China. These products are then shipped very cheaply back to the United States. I'm told that real animal fur from raccoon dogs is often cheaper to purchase than actual fake fur. For this reason, many garments are containing raccoon dog fur even if they are saying they are faux fur. That’s a brief overview of federal fur labelling law. Thank you for watching TalksOnLaw.