Table 1 is a list of common fur-bearers used by the fur trade. Fur-bearers are usually carnivores (such as mink, lynx and wolf) or rodents (for instance muskrat, beaver and squirrel). The two most important fur-farmed animals are mink and Arctic fox. Mink are far the most numerous fur-farmed animals and the fur trade describes them as "the staple raw material of the fur industry." Other important fur-bearers for the fur trade are sable, red fox and chinchilla. Inexpressible numbers of domestic cats and dogs in Asia are skinned for their pelts.
Table 1. Common Fur-bearers Used by the Fur Trade.
North American Beaver
North American grey fox
South American grey fox
North American lynx
North American Otter
Science labels each species with a unique two-part name to avoid confusing species. The fur trade, however, gives the same animal species different names, sometimes depending on coat colour variation (as with the foxes) and this can be confusing. Common confusions are:
Table 2. Common & Fur Trade Names for Fur-bearers.
Fur Trade Name
White or Blue fox
Fitch or Ferret
Value of Fur Retail Sales Worldwide
The retail sales of fur include fur garments, trim and accessories. The worldwide value of the fur trade has increased in the last few years despite a growing public opposition to the trade.
Table 3. Value of Fur Retail Sales Worldwide, 1999 - 2005.
Main & Useful Sources for this Entry
You can find these and other sources on the Web.
The Socio-Economic Impact of European Fur Farming. European Fur Breeders Association / International Fur Trade Federation.
International Fur Trade Federation (IFTF) web site.
pelts. Industry & Trade Summary. US International Trade Commission. Publication 3666. 2004.