Last week, the US House of Representatives passed an amendment that would ban mink farming in America. This is a bipartisan amendment that was led by representatives of both political parties, Rosa DeLauro (D) and Nancy Mace (R). The amendment was included in the larger America COMPETES Act.
In a statement, US Representative Rosa DeLauro writes:
“The factory farming of mink threatens public health, especially as we continue fighting against the COVID-19 pandemic. The evidence is clear: mink operations can incubate and spread new COVID-19 variants and pose a unique threat of extending the pandemic. At the same time, with virtually no domestic market, the U.S. mink industry has been in steady decline for years. Now is the time for this legislation to become law, and I am urging all of my colleagues to continue supporting this bipartisan effort.”
In her statement, US Representative Nancy Mace writes:
“One of the many lessons we learned at the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic is the real danger of animal to human transmission of disease. In fact, If COVID-19 could design its perfect habitat for mutation and transmission, it would closely resemble a mink farm, where thousands of mink are kept in small, often unsanitary, overcrowded cages, for days on end. Today, through working together on both sides of the aisle, we have the chance to end the abusive and inhumane mink farming practice that puts Americans’ health at risk.”
The public health risks and inhumane practices of mink farming are clear; an increasing number of jurisdictions around the world are acting quickly to outlaw this practice. If passed, the US would join British Columbia to become the second jurisdiction in North America to ban mink farming.
The bill will now head to the US Senate for further debate.