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On 20 March 2018, the San Francisco Board of Supervisors approved an ordinance to ban the sale of new fur apparel and accessories in San Francisco. Thus, San Francisco becomes the third city in California, after West Hollywood and Berkeley, and the first major city of USA to ban the sale of fur apparel and accessories.
The ordinance will become effective on 1 January 2019. However, retailers are allowed to sale their existing stock before 1 January 2020 provided they demonstrate proof of purchase prior to 20 March 2018.
The purpose of enacting the fur ban is to send a strong message to the fur industry that the cruelty these animals endure for the purpose of becoming clothing and accessories is not consistent with the values of the city.
According to the ordinance, ‘fur’ and ‘fur product’ are defined as below:
"Fur" means any animal skin or part thereof with hair, fleece, or fur fibers attached thereto, either in its raw or processed state. "Fur" does not include such skins or parts thereof as are to be converted into leather, which in processing will have the hair, fleece, or fur fiber completely removed; cowhide with hair attached thereto; or lambskin or sheepskin with fleece attached thereto.
"Fur Product" means any article of clothing or covering for any part of the body, or any fashion accessory, including but not limited to handbags. shoes, slippers, hats, earmuffs, scarves, shawls, gloves, jewelry, and keychains that is made in whole or in part of Fur. "Fur Product" does not include dog or cat fur products.
The legislation does not apply to leather products, sheep or lamb skin products and used fur products.
A first violation would incur a penalty of up to $500 per item, per day; up to $750 for a second violation within one year of the date of the first violation, and up to $1,000 for each additional violation within one year of the date of a second or subsequent violation.