The once-coveted pot of gold for Nova Scotia is in the pits – again. Following a hugely unsuccessful showing at two of the world’s largest fur auctions, mink farmers in Canada are bracing for another difficult year.
“Most if not all [mink farmers] have experienced averages well below cost of production … and compounding that issue is the fact that most are only selling a portion of what is offered,” Matt Moses, a fur farmer in Nova Scotia and member of the Nova Scotia Mink Breeders Association told CBC radio. “There is a great deal of fur to be moved, and [with] what appears to be very little appetite for it, there’s a very good chance that much of this fur will be held into next year, which will again cause an oversupply for next year.”
Moses indicated that to break even on the cost of raising mink and selling their skin, each pelt must be sold for $48 to $58 at auction, and admitted that some farmers were seeing prices as low as $20.
On the heels of another report on AllNovaScotia.com that as many as 25 out of fewer than 100 farms have been flagged for violations under the new Fur Industry Act (with approximately 16 not needing to meet the requirements due to size), and the debt repayment cycles on environment upgrades coming up, it is expected that the industry will take a big hit.
According to the CBC, Rosedale Farms – one of the largest in the province – filed for bankruptcy in December 2015. Also last year, 90 of 93 farms applied for $20 million of government handouts to keep afloat.
The facts are simple: fewer people are buying fur, more people are learning the truth about the inherent inhumane conditions and lives faced by fur-bearing animals in the wild and confinement when the fur trade is involved, and even $20 million in bailout money (enough to give every resident of Nova Scotia $20 cash) isn’t saving this dying industry.
The time has never been better to declare your choice to #MakeFurHistory.