FICA, the Fur Information Council of America, was established in 1987 to protect and promote the interests of the retail and manufacturing sectors of the U.S. fur industry. FICA serves its members in multifaceted ways. Like other non-profit trade associations, FICA provides background information and guidance on industry developments, researches markets trends and consumer habits, tracks and reports sales and price points, identifies issues of common concern and represents the fur industry in dealings with the press, the public sector and other industries, as well as state and federal governments. FICA monitors legislative initiatives and judicial actions that have direct impact on the fur industry FICA is affiliated with other fur-related organizations such as the International Fur Trade Federation (IFTF), headquartered in London, the National Trappers Association representing over 160,000 fur trappers and the Fur Commission USA which represents the U.S. mink farming community. Membership has increased steadily over the years and now numbers hundreds of fur retailers, wholesalers, fashion designers, business analysts and editors throughout the country.
FICA also works to saves members time and money by offering exclusive programs such as a merchant card program and arrangements for money saving business insurance products. FICA’s newsletter – FURthermore – keeps members informed regularly on trends and issues. Finally, FICA is the only fur trade association that employs a full-time fashion promotions team.
As we have noted previously, extremist animal rights groups have stepped up their attacks on the fur industry as consumer interest in fur products has increased. FICA provides members with facts that counter the distortions and misrepresentations anti animal use groups and offers information and assistance that helps protect members in the face of personal threats made by some of these groups. It should be noted that 85% of all U.S. fur retailers are small, independent, frequently family-owned businesses. On their own, these firms do not have the wherewithal to oppose concerted campaigns mounted by well-financed animal activists to embarrass furriers and destroy their livelihoods. FICA is there to help.