Seals are hunted in various parts of the world for commercial, subsistence and cultural reasons. In general, this does not endanger their populations.
However, EU citizens expressed concerns about animal welfare aspects of seal hunting. At the time, several EU countries were considering, or had already introduced, national laws to ban the import and use of fur skins and other seal products.
The EU seal regime, put in place in 2009 and amended in 2015, introduced a general ban on the placing of seal products on the EU market in response to these concerns.