Covid and mink: outbreak in mink farm in Italy, already in August

Positive to SARS-CoV-2 at least 2 samples - taken in August - from mink from an Italian farm: this was revealed by LAV, which obtained this information only after numerous and insistent appeals and requests for access to administrative documents to the Ministry of Health, to the Scientific Technical Committee, to the Regions and to the IZS (of Lombardy and Emilia Romagna), finally discovering the results of molecular tests only in these hours.

Serious and irresponsible silence and inertia of the Health Authorities for not having given news of mink infected with SARS-CoV-2 on the farm and discovered already in August. Instead of starting a rigorous screening with diagnostic tests in all mink farms in Italy, even after full-blown positive cases, the Ministry of Health (and the Regions) continued to limit themselves to clinical observation even knowing that minks, like people, can be asymptomatic.

In fact, these farms, in addition to causing severe suffering to animals, are also reservoirs of the coronavirus. Not having carried out specific investigations on all mink farms in Italy has exposed, and still exposes, public health to an objective risk.

We renew the appeal to Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte and to the Minister of Health Roberto Speranza to urgently ban these farms. Other European states have already done so and now do not run this additional risk of spreading the coronavirus.