Danish mink breeders to sue state over 2020 culling

Culled minks at a Danish fur farm in November 2020.
Culled minks at a Danish fur farm in November 2020.File photo: Mads Claus Rasmussen/Ritzau Scanpix
Owners of Danish mink fur farms are to sue the state for 600 million kroner in compensation for the decision in late 2020 to cull all minks in the country due to concerns related to Covid-19 transmission in the animals.

The amount is considered by the mink breeders to be necessary compensation for mink skins that were destroyed last year, broadcaster TV2 Fyn reports.     

In the 2020 compensation package agreed by parliament for the mink breeders, a price of 250 kroner per mink skin was set.

But Danish mink skins fetched an average price of 323 kroner per skin at autumn 2021 auctions, according to the report.

Mink breeders therefore contend they are being under compensated by 73 kroner per skin.

A breeder interviewed by TV2 Fyn defended the position to seek more than the price set by the market value at the time of the political compensation deal.

“The animals that were culled last year in November were to be sold in 2021. So you should get 2021 prices,” the breeder, Jens Jensen, told TV2.

Compensation for destructed skins forms part of a broader compensation package agreed by the Danish parliament following the cullings and shuttering of the mink fur industry in the country last year.

The deal is worth some 19 billion kroner, of which 2.5 billion have so far been paid out according to a status published by the Danish Veterinary and Food Administration (Fødevarestyrelsen) on November 19th.

READ ALSO: Denmark to spend billions on compensation deal for mink farmers

Liberal party food spokesperson Erling Bonnesen, who was involved in agreeing the original compensation package, told the regional media that the price was calculated based on available market information at the time.

“So there’s a retrospective rationalisation (here) based on price trends and market trends. But this must be decided in court,” Bonnesen said.

Around 15 million fur farm minks were culled after a mutation of Covid-19 was detected in the animals in autumn 2020.

Health authorities were concerned the mutation could result in increased resistance by the virus to Covid-19 vaccines, which were still in development at the time.

READ ALSO: Denmark government backs extension of ban on mink farming


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