Icelandic Minks Are COVID-Free Skip to content

Icelandic Minks Are COVID-Free

The Icelandic Food and Veterinary Authority has tested for the coronavirus in every mink farm in Iceland and all tests were negative. Increased infection prevention regulations have been issued for mink farms.

Minks in all nine mink farms in Iceland were tested at the Keldur Institute for Experimental Pathology, University of Iceland, as well as DeCode Genetics. Samples were taken from dead minks following the annual fur harvest. All tests were negative for COVID-19. Following the harvest, the country’s stock of farm minks has decreased to 15,000 animals who will wait for spring to mate again.

The Food and Veterinary Authority has made plans for regular testing at every farm this winter. In addition, mink farm staff will be tested according to Chief Epidemiologist’s directions.

The Ministry of Industry and Innovation has issued increased infection prevention regulations for mink farms, according to The Icelandic Food and Veterinary Authority’s suggestion. The aim is to prevent COVID-19 infection in Icelandic farmed minks. The regulation dictates increased demand for staff’s personal infection preventions, a ban on live mink transport and unnecessary mink dwelling visits. Live mink displays will not be allowed and as a result, the minks at the Reykjavík Family Park and Zoo will not be on display.

There has been no suspicion of COVID-19 infections in minks in Iceland but The Icelandic Food and Veterinary Authority embarked on the testing as a precaution following news of COVID-19 infection in Danish mink farms and viral transmissions between minks and humans. The Danish government’s attempt to respond to the news by having all minks in Denmark put down has caused political uproar and led to the resignation of the Danish Minister of Food, Fisheries and Equal Opportunities.



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