Denmark to cull up to 17 million mink amid coronavirus fears

Date: 
November, 2020
Country: 
Denmark

As many as 17 million mink are to be culled in Denmark after a mutated version of the coronavirus that can spread to humans was detected on mink farms.

Prime Minister Mette Frederiksen said the mutated virus posed a "risk to the effectiveness" of a future Covid-19 vaccine.

Denmark is the world's biggest producer of mink fur.

Police said the culling should happen as soon as possible.

Coronavirus cases have been detected in mink farms in Denmark's northern Jutland region, and in other parts of Europe, for several months.

But cases are spreading fast in Denmark, and five cases of the new virus strain were found on mink farms. Twelve people had become infected, the authorities said.

Prime Minister Frederiksen described the situation as "very, very serious".

She cited a government report which said the mutated virus had been found to weaken the body's ability to form antibodies, potentially making the current vaccines under development for Covid-19 ineffective.

"We have a great responsibility towards our own population, but with the mutation that has now been found, we have an even greater responsibility for the rest of the world as well," she told a news conference

Source: BBC