The European legislation in 2009 banning seal products on animal welfare grounds was both unnecessary and ill-thought through. Seals are wonderful animals and should be allowed to thrive but – quite apart from the sporran industry – they are also decimating the salmon population.
The whisky industry has the gravitas and, more importantly, the resources to fight its corner. The sporran-making industry does not.
The sporran is part of Scotland’s national dress. Alternative skins are not comparable and not part of the sporran’s heritage.
There are now humane ways of controlling animal over-runs. This can and should apply to the seal population of Scotland. It seems that common sense and good judgment gets you nowhere – unless there is a wealthy influential lobby to support it.
Deirdre Kinloch Anderson
Longniddry, East Lothian