Denmark to kill 15 million minks amid “very serious” concern over links to human COVID cases

Copenhagen, Denmark – The Danish Prime Minister said on Wednesday that the government wants to reduce all 15 million minks in Denmark’s farms to reduce the risk of re-transmitting new coronoviruses into humans. Mete Friedrichsen quoted a government agency report that a map of coronovirus in Denmark showed a mutation in a virus found in 12 people in the northern part of the country that was infected with mink.

Health Minister Magnus Hunnicke said that half of 783 human COVID-19 cases in northern Denmark are related to “mink”.

“It’s very serious,” Fredrickson said. “Thus, viruses mutated in mink can have devastating consequences worldwide.”

Farre's novel coronavirus mutation causes mink carcasses to be disposed of in a field
On October 21, 2020, mink carcasses are disposed of at a farm in Ferre in the southern part of Jutland, Denmark.

Ritzau Scanpeaks / Mette Moore / REUTERS

Mink has also recently prompted coronovirus concerns in the US, but officials said there was no evidence the animals had infected humans. Last month, officials said something 12,000 animals died of disease On farms in Utah and Wisconsin. The United States Department of Agriculture’s National Veterinary Services Laboratories (NVSL) said humans working on a Utah farm with COVID-19 likely transferred the virus to animals in July, and there were no indications that Mink Had infected some workers.

A spokesperson for Utah’s Department of Agriculture told CBS News ‘Sophie Lewis’ that research done in the state, “still supports that the disease has spread from humans to mink and conversely the risk of transmission is very low . ”

Denmark is one of the world’s leading mink fur exporters, producing an estimated 17 million furs per year. Copenhagen für, an affiliate of 1,500 Danish breeders, accounted for 40% of global mink production. Most of its exports go to China and Hong Kong.

According to government estimates, pulling the country’s 15 million minks could cost 5 billion kronor ($ 785 million). “It should happen as soon as possible,” said National Police Chief Thorilde Fogade.

Denmark’s Minister for Food, Mogens Jensen, said that 207 farms were now infected, since last month 41, and the disease has spread to all of Jutland’s western peninsula.

Closed minks are seen in an outbreak of coronovirus disease (COVID-19) at a mink farm in Gozel, northern Jutland
Employees of the Danish Veterinary and Food Administration and the Danish Emergency Management Agency at Protective Devices are seen due to an outbreak at Corinavirus disease (COVID-19) at a mink farm on October 8, 2020 in Gozel, North Jutland, Denmark.

Ritzau Scanpeaks / Henning Bagger / REUTERS

Last month, Denmark started using millions of minks in the north of the country. The government has promised to provide compensation to the farmers.

The country has recorded 50,530 confirmed COVID-19 infections and 729 deaths.

Of the 1,139 fur farms in Denmark, 207 have been infected with COVID-19, which prompted the announcement. Millions of minks will be killed as a result.

Animal Welfare Group Humane Society International commended the Prime Minister for taking “such an essential and science-based step to protect Danish citizens”, and said it hoped that Coronovirus would lose so much mink. Causes farms to go out of business.

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“Although the deaths of millions of minks – whether sacrificed for COVID-19 or killed for fur – are an animal welfare tragedy, fur farmers are now forced to move away from this cruel and dying industry and choose a more humane and sustainable There will be a clear opportunity for livelihoods instead, ”said Joanna Sveba, spokesperson for the Humane Society International-Europe.


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