I very much welcome the passing of the final stages of the Animal Health and Welfare and Forestry (Miscellaneous Provisions) Bill 2021, which took place in the Seanad on 29 March.

This Bill, once enacted, will implement a ban on fur farming – something which the Green Party has long campaigned for, along with many members of the public who believe in protecting animal welfare. I am especially pleased that the Bill had such strong cross-party support, signalling a progressive shift in how we view the treatment of animals in Ireland.

Under this new legislation, the three active farms in Ireland that still breed and rear mink for the purposes of pelting for the fur industry, will be closed. Those farms will receive compensation for their losses incurred as a result of this new law.

I’d like to thank my colleague Minister of State at the Department of Agriculture Senator Pippa Hackett for her work on this really important legislation, and commend all those who have campaigned so passionately on the issue.