Denmark to extend mink breeding ban another year until 2023

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A mink is seen at the farm of Henrik Nordgaard Hansen and Ann-Mona Kulsoe Larsen near Naestved, Denmark, November 6, 2020. Ritzau Scanpix/Mads Claus Rasmussen via REUTERS.

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COPENHAGEN, Sept 28 (Reuters) - Denmark will extend its ban on mink breeding for another year to 2023, agriculture minister Rasmus Prehn said on Tuesday.

The current ban, which was instituted after the coronavirus spread to several hundred mink farms in Denmark last year and prompted the government to order all mink in the country culled, had been due to last until 2022.

A majority in parliament agreed the extension on Tuesday, news wire Ritzau reported, but the decision still needs ratification in parliament.

With their decision, lawmakers followed a June assessment from the country's top infectious diseases institute, which said that allowing mink breeding in Denmark after the end of this year could still pose a public health risk.

"In the spring, we will decide on the future of mink production in Denmark. Here we will look at both health risk and animal ethics," Zenia Stampe, leader of the Social Liberal Party, which supports the government, said on Twitter.

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Reporting by Nikolaj Skydsgaard and Stine Jacobsen; Editing by Catherine Evans and Giles Elgood

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