The decision to cull the minks was a drastic one. But we do know a few things that are raising eyebrows. For an optimal experience visit our site on another browser. Kopenhagen Fur, a cooperative of 1,500 Danish breeders, accounts for 40% of the global mink production. But a cull of the country’s entire mink population is put on hold. [21] Fashion house Birger Christensen, purveyor to the Danish royal family, is "the finest furrier in Copenhagen" and sells only Saga Royal grade fur. Fish waste from the fishing industryis used as feed at mink farms. “With furs, if it’s not made one place, it’s made some place else. Stampe’s company sells fur coats wholesale to outlets in Europe, the … Mink carcasses are disposed of at a farm in Farre in the southern part of Jutland, Denmark Read More Related Articles. The country's prime minister later apologized and its food and agriculture minister stepped down when the order to kill the animals was declared illegal. Mads Claus Rasmussen / AFP - Getty Images file. But Marc Kaufman, a fur merchant in New York City who sells a lot of mink coats, said there is no reason for his industry to worry about the outbreaks. Like every other fur farmer in Denmark, he has 10 days to kill his mink. There are 5,000 fur farms in the EU, all located across 22 countries; these areas of production collectively account for 50% of the global production of farmed fur. [3][4], In November 2020, a mutated strain of COVID-19 known as "cluster 5" was detected among minks, leading the Danish Government to order the culling of 17 million minks in order to prevent a resurgence in COVID-19 cases. “With or without a cull, the animals on these farms would still be violently killed at some point,” Ashley Byrne, an associate director at PETA, said. Economic support packages have been established for those affected. Kopenhagen Fur, a cooperative of 1,500 Danish breeders, accounts for 40% of the global mink production. Thousands of killed mink being buried at the Jydske Dragonregiment's training ground at Noerre Felding near Holstebro in Denmark, after Denmark, the world's biggest producer of mink fur, had announced it would cull all of the country's minks after a mutated version of the new coronavirus was detected at its mink farms and had spread to people, on Nov. 12, 2020. Each auction typically sells some 260 million euro worth of fur and lasts five days. For animal rights groups, the debacle illustrates why fur farming should be eliminated. Covid mink farm outbreaks brew controversy in ... - NBC News [4], Left: A typical mink farm layout in 1908. Denmark passed a law Monday banning mink breeding for a year, following the country’s controversial cull of all the animals over a mutated strain of the coronavirus, according to reports. Denmark, the world's largest mink fur exporter, produces an estimated 17 million furs per year. Some 215 mink farms in Jutland region are infected with this type of coronavirus, and therefore a regional lockdown has been announced to curb the infection. Kopenhagen Fur serves as a farmers' cooperative. The Danish government proposed legislation in Parliament that would ban mink farming until December 2021 and allow about 15 million minks to … At fur farms, scientists have seen Covid-19 transfer from minks to cats through mink manure, and are worried about what would happen if it gets into wildlife populations. Mink give birth to their litter of generally five offspring in the nesting boxes; they also feed the litter in the nesting boxes. Spain, Sweden, Italy, and the US have … Part of the problem, he explained, is that we don’t know the effects of the spread. mink farms in the U.S. are seeing Covid-19, Covid mink farm outbreaks brew controversy in the scientific community, tearing up as she called it a “regrettable mistake”. [8] By the mid-1980s, Denmark was the second largest mink producer, behind the United States. Denmark’s government has submitted a bill that would ban mink farming until 2022 while it seeks to address concerns that the animals may spread mutated variants of coronavirus to humans. The mutations in Danish mink, ... Before the pandemic, the Netherlands was already in the process of stopping intensive mink farming. [14] A deal was later reached to retroactively make the government's order legal. Denmark is the world's biggest producer of mink fur, with a turnover of some 1.1 billion euros a year. Economic support packages have … “We want to keep this a human virus,” Weese said. COPENHAGEN, Denmark (AP) — The Danish government said Tuesday it wants to ban mink farming until the end of 2021, as it presented a law proposal that … As a result of Covid-19-related culls of mink in Denmark and the Netherlands, China could take over as the world’s top mink … "We have 65,000 mink. Circa 2012, the average price per mink skin was 582 Danish crowns (US$100), then the highest price ever recorded at Kopenhagen Fur. Denmark is not the first country to report outbreaks on fur farms but it is the world's biggest producer. “Transmission back to people is more a concern at a personal level,” Weese said. Mink fur of Denmark is exclusively auctioned through Kopenhagen Fur. Denmark is the world’s most prolific producer of mink pelts: with between 15 and 17 million of the animals housed in more than 1,000 mink farms when the cull was announced (meaning the mink population is at least treble that of Denmark’s human one). Those conditions might be ideal for shoving the small mammals into metal machines that skin them for fancy coats and hats, but they also can be breeding grounds for the coronavirus. Denmark’s prime minister broke down in tears Thursday while visiting a mink farmer whose herd was killed on government orders meant to curb … An excavator dumps dead mink into a ditch earlier this month. It’s why both Weese and Runstadler say more studying needs to be done to understand Covid-19 in minks. In the December 2012 auction, there were 500 bidders with 85 percent of the pelts purchased by customers from China. “I worry we are not doing enough to monitor that situation to make sure this virus isn’t spilling into the animal populations,” Runstadler said. In northern Wisconsin, two farms in Taylor County are currently under quarantine after recent outbreaks killed 5,500 minks. Denmark was forced to launch a wholesale cull of the country’s entire population of farmed mink due to a massive coronavirus outbreak among the animals. The northern region of the country, where most fur farms lie, was placed under strict lockdowns. News of “zombie minks,” pushed up from their shallow and quickly built graves by the gas created from their decomposing bodies, has only furthered anger. After undercover footage from the largest farm in Poland was released to the public, Poland is in the process of banning fur farming. (CNN) The United Kingdom has banned travelers from Denmark after the country reported a widespread outbreak of a new variant of the virus which causes Covid-19 in mink farms. [1][2] Ranked third in Denmark's agricultural export items of animal origin, fur and mink skins have a yearly export value of about EUR 0,5 billion. Amid a COVID-19 outbreak that has spread to humans, up to 17 million mink are set to be killed in Denmark’s largest-ever mass mink culling, according to BBC News. Mink breeder Thorbjoern Jepsen holds up a mink, as police forcibly gained access to his mink farm in Gjoel, Denmark, Friday, Oct. 9, 2020. AFP - December 21, 2020 11:51 PM. After news of mink farm outbreaks in Denmark broke in the fall, B.C. Denmark's mink farmers are mourning what they say is the death of their industry after a government order to cull all of their stocks over a mutated variant of the new coronavirus. More Information on Mink Farming Statement on Mink Culling in Denmark The Danish government has controversially culled millions of mink from farms after a mutated strain of coronavirus was detected in the animals. The virus, officials said, spread from human handler to mink, mutated, and then spread back to humans. Denmark is among the largest mink exporters in the world and produces an estimate 17 million furs per year. The government recommends mink farmers continue with the cull, but they are not required to do so until legislation that will be put forward soon is passed. Spain, Sweden, Italy, and the US have all been affected, as has the Netherlands, where mink farming will be outlawed by spring next year. By Ole Jensen/Getty Images. If farms with outbreaks were isolated, it’s not known whether the virus would circulate through all the minks and eventually die out. Most of its exports go to China and Hong Kong. Four were found in the local community, rather than … Mink farming was introduced to Denmark close to one hundred years ago and Denmark has become the world’s largest producer of mink skins. Outrage fomented in Denmark after images and videos of botched killings and mass mink graves circulated, and farmers spoke to the hardship this would cause them. [5] The new mutation is known as "cluster 5". ... negotiated and the government is introducing legislation effectively banning mink farming … Animal Protection Denmark, an advocacy group, recommended a long-term solution to the problem of mink and coronavirus: “The right decision would be to end mink farming … The culling began late last month, after many mink cases were detected. COPENHAGEN, Denmark -- The Danish government said Tuesday it wants to ban mink farming until the end of 2021, as it presented a law proposal that … The small, ferret-like mammals farmed for their valuable fur have raised alarm after contracting and mutating the coronavirus, passing it back to humans. “There is still some debate over whether it's a relevant change, and there’s not a clear answer on that,” Weese said. [6] In November 2020, the Danish government announced that all remaining mink in Denmark would be culled by 16 November 2020. “The easiest way to get rid of a problem is to get rid of the problem,” Weese said, “but that’s not always the best way.”. Denmark's mink farmers are mourning what they say is the death of their industry after a government order to cull all of their stocks over a mutated variant of the new coronavirus. The mink industry in Denmark produces 40 percent of the world's pelts, making Denmark the largest producer of mink skins in the world. Culling is often the answer when data on animal spread is inconclusive. Denmark bans mink farming for a year after coronavirus cull. If Copenhagen doesn’t farm the skins, Russia will. Nesting boxes are attached inside the cage. FILE - In this Dec. 6, 2012, file photo, minks look out of a cage at a fur farm in the village of Litusovo, northeast of Minsk, Belarus. Symbols on the sketch: "D" on the sketch marks the entry gate, areas marked "A" represent segregated cages for male and female minks and "O" represents the trees grown in the open space. Buried in shallow pits and trenches in Western Denmark, the dead minks were pushed out of the ground by gas emitted from their decomposing bodies, leading to more outrage and concern. And across the Atlantic, mink farms in the U.S. are seeing Covid-19 spread and deaths of their own. Aan employee removing dead mink from a chamber after they were gassed on a farm near Naestved, Denmark on Nov. 6, 2020. [16], Climatic conditions in Denmark, where the winter is mild and the summer is cool, are considered ideal for husbanding animals with fur cover. The Danish government said Tuesday it wants to ban mink farming until the end of 2021, as it presented a law proposal that would allow for … It also attaches pretty well to cats, but not as well to dogs and cows, he said. “When it gets cold, people need fur.”. Facing calls for resignation from the parliamentary opposition and sharp public criticism,[13] Prime Minister Mette Frederiksen acknowledged that the order to cull all minks was illegal, and Jensen resigned on November 18. Mink breeder Thorbjoern Jepsen holds up a mink, as police forcibly gained access to his mink farm in Gjoel, Denmark, on Oct. 9, 2020. Why are minks farmed in Denmark? [11] Though the country has some of the largest mink farms in the world, it also has many small business mink farms run by families. Right: Mink breeder with a young pearl mink, "FACTS: Denmark is the world's largest producer of mink fur", "Denmark says it will cull 17 million mink after discovering a mutated strain of COVID-19 that officials fear could 'restart' the entire global pandemic", "Ny corona-mutation er en kæp i hjulet pÃ¥ vaccinen: Det ved vi om 'cluster 5, "Methods for the identification of farm escapees in feral mink (, "The culling of minks in Denmark prompts a political crisis", "Danish Agriculture Minister Resigns Amid Criticism For Ordering Mink Cull", "Danish farm minister quits over mink scandal", "Danish lawmakers ban mink farming until 2022 amid coronavirus outbreak | DW | 21.12.2020", "Danish mink industry toasts a Chinese chill", https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Mink_industry_in_Denmark&oldid=995573244, Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License, This page was last edited on 21 December 2020, at 20:01. [5][6], American mink (Neovison vison) were introduced as a farm animal in Denmark in the mid-1920s[7] – European mink (Mustela lutreola) have never been recorded in Denmark. Morten Stricker / Ritzau Scanpix via AFP - Getty Images file. Kaufman, whose family has been in the business since 1870, said his shop is busier this year than last, and customers aren’t talking about the minks getting Covid-19. “When you’ve got a disease that is killing lots of people, there is less willingness to be lax with the animal side,” he said. Around the world, minks are getting sick. Since the mass slaughter, hundreds of mink carcasses have emerged from their graves. Additionally, mink farming has been banned in Denmark until 31 December 2021, including import and export of live mink. Demand is there, and need for the product is there. At fur farms, minks are densely packed in conditions ripe for close contact with one another. Kopenhagen Fur, a cooperative of 1,500 Danish breeders, accounts for … Danish Prime Minister Mette Frederiksen apologized for the killing, tearing up as she called it a “regrettable mistake” and admitting the government did not have the legal jurisdiction to cull so many animals. Either way there is gonna be a supply because there is demand.”. Mink farming in numbers Farmed mink is the single most important fur type produced in North America today, in terms of the number of pelts produced and the value of the fur. Denmark has been a leader in breeding and veterinary science for mink for decades now, being the producer of 17 million pelts a year, out of 50 million sold globally. Denmark is the world's biggest producer of mink fur and its main export markets are China and Hong Kong. More than 50 million mink a year are bred for their fur, mainly in China, Denmark, the Netherlands and Poland. The Danish government spared no mink, killing infected and healthy animals, alike. Auctions are held five times in a year, with the first held in December after the newly pelted skins are ready, and the last in September. What is known, though, Ontario Veterinary College professor Scott Weese said, is that viruses don’t automatically work their way into cells. In the United States as of 2020, there are some 120 mink farms producing 2 million pelts a year, with a farm-gate value of US$80 million. The animals can’t move on or off the farm, said Kevin Hoffman, the public information officer for Wisconsin’s Division of Animal Health. I’m not even sure it’s dawned on me how grave the consequences will be for us. Danish research played a vital role in the creation of a new set of European rules to protect fur animals launched in 1999. Mink at a farm in Denmark were found to be infected with the new coronavirus and all 11,000 of the animals there will have to be culled, Danish authorities said on Wednesday. It says … Climatic conditions in Denmark, where the winter is mild and the summer is cool, are considered ideal for husbanding animals with fur cover. Denmark has reported 214 human cases linked to mink farms, of which 12 are thought to be of cluster 5. Data from animal rights group Humane Society International puts Denmark as the world’s second-largest exporter of mink fur, behind China. Opponents say the eradication of all healthy mink was a breach of the Danish constitution. There is also some worry that a mutated form of the virus, given to humans by minks, could make it more difficult to implement an effective vaccine. [17] Danish fur farms produce about 15.6 million minks annually. IE 11 is not supported. Nesting boxes are attached inside the cage. The culling of at least 2.5 million minks in northern Denmark has started, authorities said Monday after the coronavirus has … The Danish government said Tuesday it wants to ban mink farming until the end of 2021, as it presented a law proposal that would allow for the culling of 15 million minks as announced last week. Outbreaks have been reported in … … [12], It was revealed in late November that the Minister for Agriculture, Mogens Jensen, and five other ministers had been made aware in September that the culling of the entire country's mink population, rather than just those in the infected areas, would be illegal. All 12 cases were identified in September 2020 in North Jutland, Denmark. When outbreaks occur at farms, local health departments are mandating quarantines. Fuzzy thinking A covid-19 mutation belatedly forces Denmark to halt mink farming. Jeppe Kofod said at a press conference in early November. Kopenhagen Fur, located in Copenhagen, is the world's largest fur auction house; annually, it sells approximately 14 million Danish mink skins produced by 2,000 Danish fur farmers, and 7 million mink skins produced in other countries. Mink farm owner Stig Sørensen in Bording, Denmark. Runstadler, who studies emerging diseases in animals, said the outbreak in minks hasn’t surprised many in his field, in part because of the conditions in which they live. [17] Fish waste from the fishing industry is used as feed at mink farms. Mink are seen at the farm of Henrik Nordgaard Hansen and Ann-Mona Kulsoe Larsen near Naestved, Denmark on Nov. 6, 2020. [3] Mink produced in Denmark is considered to be the finest in the world and is ranked by grade, with the best being Saga Royal, followed by Saga, Quality 1, and Quality 2. Runstadler said it’s hard to know if minks are unique among other species in their ability to contract and spread the virus, or if they’re just in a situation that leads to such outbreaks. By Eli Cahan Aug. 18, 2020 , 10:55 AM. “This virus attaches well to mink. “These Covid-19 outbreaks and the grisly circumstances that have gone along with them in the mink industry are just more evidence that the fur industry needs to be finished.”. Mink give birth to their litter of generally five offspring in the nesting boxes; they also feed the litter in the nesting boxes. There are no mink farms in the UK – fur farming was made illegal in the UK in 2000. Still, “we’re definitely concerned,” Hoffman said, adding farmers are recommended to interact with mink the way they would humans during a pandemic: wearing proper PPE and keeping their distance. Ministry staff conducted inspections at each of the province’s licensed mink farms to … It’s a very good match.”. Denmark went so far as to cull 17 million minks in November in response to outbreaks at more than 200 mink farms. Denmark will cull about 17 million mink after a mutated form of coronavirus that can spread to humans was found on mink farms. Most of the world's farmed fur is produced by European farmers. The minks are farmed for their fur, which is then used for various purposes, including coats, clothing and … Here in Denmark… By. Fur farming is the practice of breeding or raising certain types of animals for their fur.. Plus, people don’t have the close attachment to minks they might dogs. Denmark has announced a complete cull of all mink on Danish farms - a total of up to 17 million animals - due to spiralling Covid-19 infections. “They put down cows when they have cow disease, they put down chickens when they have salmonella, this isn’t the first time animals have been killed for disease purposes. (Henning Bagger /Ritzau Scanpix via AP) “We should be identifying the interfaces where humans and animals are in close and frequent enough contact that virus spillover is possible, and doing surveillance.”. [11], In November 2020, a mutated strain of COVID-19 was found in the animals necessitating the government to cull seventeen million mink because of a fear that they could be the catalyst for restarting the international pandemic. Under UK law, minks, as well as foxes and moles, are protected under … Now it is about to embark on a massive cull of around 17 million mink … Even at peak, the Irish and Greek mink industries were never even a fraction the size of the now largely liquidated mink industry in Denmark, which before the COVID-19 pandemic produced about 40% of the mink pelts sold worldwide. [18] A Danish mink farm might have 13,000 cages, set in rows of 60 metres (200 ft) length, and 43 sheds in which two to four minks are housed. They need to stick onto something. 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