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COVID in Mink in Poland

02/13/2021

On December 6th 2020, CHICK-NEWS reported on claims by the Medical University of Gdansk that COVID -19 had been detected on eight mink farms.  The report was denied by Dr. Krzysztof Niemczuk, the Director General of the National Veterinary Service.  The subject of mink COVID became politicized and the ruling government Law and Justice Party retracted a ban on mink farming, following representations made by agricultural associations. In September 2020, the mink population Poland totaled six million on 354 farms. 

 

The December 6th article included the comment, “Denial of COVID-19 in mink may prove politically advantageous in the short term, but ultimately convenient rejection of facts will prove counterproductive whether in Poland or Wisconsin.”

 

USDA-FAS GAIN Report PL2021-0004, dated February 4th confirmed outbreaks in mink on a farm in Kartuzy County in the province of Pomerania.  The diagnosis resulted from surveillance of asymptomatic animals.  On February 1st a decision was made to cull all mink on the affected farm.  Despite the fact that the National Institute of Veterinary Services in Pulawy regards this case as the first in the nation, the studies conducted by the Medical University of Gdansk clearly demonstrated the presence of SARS-Cov-2 virus in mink in Poland two months ago, concurrent with extensive outbreaks with mink mortality in Holland, Spain, Denmark, the U.S., Israel, Greece and Sweden.