Wednesday 22 March 2023

Coronavirus found on more mink farms, taking total to eight

Mink on a fur farm. Photo: Dzīvnieku brīvība via Flickr

Coronavirus has been found in mink at three more fur farms in Noord Brabant, farming minister Carola Schouten has confirmed.

The infections came to light during compulsory screening introduced since the first cases were found in April. A fourth suspected new case is also under investigation.

The disease has now been established at six companies and on eight different locations at the heart of the fur farming industry.

The new cases were identified during ‘early warning’ research carried out on mink which have died unexpectedly. Some 50 farms have so far sent in mink to be tested through this scheme.

Experts are currently assessing what needs to be done to stop the spread of coronavirus at mink farms and culling all the animals on affected farms has not been ruled out, Schouten said. More information will be available later this week.

Last month it emerged that at least one fur farm worker had been infected with Covid-19 by a mink. However, the risk to humans remains very small as long as farm workers continue to wear protective clothing, the minister said.

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