A mink at a third facility in B.C has tested positive for COVID-19 leading animal welfare advocacy groups to call for a blanket ban on farming of the animals across the province.
SPCA’s in B.C including the Fur-Bearers, The Humans Society International, and the Union of B.C Indian Chief are calling a movement that was first brought to the province’s attention through a letter dated March.
The group informed local media they would like the government to be aware of the spread of COVID-19 on farms. Europe, specifically Denmark, killed its mink population to prevent the spread of the virus.
Then, the Agriculture, Food, and fisheries Ministry promised it would impose tighter screening measures on farms.
However, Dr. Sara Dubois, the chief scientific officer of B.C’s SPCA, said that despite the promises, they have registered another infection in a mink. She added that this was expected to happen. Dr. Dubois added that B.C has 10 mink farms in total and three have registered an infection.
Ex fur Council of Canada’s director accused the advocacy groups of taking advantage of this outbreak to benefit their individual agendas.
Alan Herscovici said that the groups jumped on this opportunity and are now fanning a lot of fear, which, he added, is unfair and terrible. He added that while the minks at the three facilities registered a positive result, none is showing signs of illness.
Through a statement, B.C authorities said their key focus is to keep the masses safe.