The number of mink farms is on the rise in Norway despite widespread condemnation, reports say.
Ten new farms have recently been, or are about to be established in Rogaland, western Norway. Five farms are in Hå, Bjerkreim, Gjesdal, Forsand and Rennesøy municipalities.
80 percent of Norway’s current mink production is in the district, with 80 farms that produce fur, Stavanger Aftenbladet reports.
Politicians have rallied against the industry demanding farms be shut down amongst health concerns for the animals and reports of cruelty.
Animal rights activists raided farms across Norway, releasing shocking footage. Animals were shown kept in confined spaces behind wire fences, had open wounds, cut off legs, ears, tails, and were even healthy ones were kept in the same cage with animals.
Fur industry representatives lashed out against the government, alleging officials’ knowledge is insufficient and that the footage painted a completely distorted picture compared to the rest of Norway.”
Nevertheless, many farmers are considering a move into the industry due to considerable profits to be made, which others in the Norwegian Fur Breeders’ Association (Pelsdyralslag/NFBA) have welcomed.
Torkil Tveter told NRK, “It’s a lawful and good business area. We’re a success story within the Norwegian farming industry. It makes good money on exports, thus bringing in good earnings from foreign currency. I’m optimistic about the future.”
The average price of each mink fur is approximately 440 kroner. According to Stavanger Aftenblad, the largest breeders could expect a profit of between five and six million kroner per year should these remain constant.