Reading Time: < 1 minute The reality of fur farming is grim (Photo: Oikeutta eläimille)
Reading Time: < 1 minute

UK retailers including Tesco and Boots have been found selling items containing real fur – labelled as fake.

Tesco has had to remove a £16 keyring from sale which was found to have rabbit fur in it, and Boots has taken a £3.99 hair slide containing mink off its shelves.


The fur was discovered by a joint investigation between animal rights charity Humane Society International [HSI] and the Mail on Sunday.

Lab tests revealed ‘fake fur’ items from Tesco, Boots, and Fat Face to contain the animal fur.

A spokesman from Boots told The Mail: “We have clear animal welfare standards that we take very seriously.

“We agreed to stock this product from a trusted supplier after receiving assurances that it was made from faux fur.”

Lucy and Tiffany Watson explain how to tell the difference between real and fake fur


According to Claire Bass, Executive Director at HSI, real fur can actually be cheaper to produce than fake fur due to the scale of fur farming.

She added that it is a misconception that real fur is an expensive luxury item.

Bass said: “Fur farms in China and Poland are able to produce enormous volumes of fur at very cheap prices, even undercutting some fake fur.

“Low cost very simply means poor animal welfare.”


She added: “We know the vast majority of the British public want nothing to do with the cruel, outdated fur trade, so we believe the fur industry is looking for other ways to shift their products under the radar to unsuspecting retailers.”

Although fur farming was banned in the UK in 2000, it is still legal to sell imported fur – because of this, HSI is calling for a ban on importing fur.

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Maria Chiorando

Maria is a news and features writer for Plant Based News. As a former magazine editor, newspaper reporter, and features writer, her work has been published by The Guardian, The Huffington Post, and various regional newspapers, as well as Vegan Life magazine and Vegan Trade Journal. She has interviewed a huge range of people, from Prime Ministers to authors, activists, pop stars and actors, and enjoys the varied range of topics writing for PBN allows her to tackle. She was previously the editor of Plant Based News for over 3 years.