WARSAW: Polish scientists have identified eight cases of COVID-19 in mink at a farm in the north of the country, the Medical University of Gdansk said on Tuesday.
Poland, a major producer of mink fur, started coronavirus tests among its farmed mink and checks among workers this month after a mutated virus was detected in farmed mink in Denmark, leading to a nationwide cull there.
No coronavirus cases among mink had previously been discovered in Poland.
Veterinary and sanitary authorities said last week that 18 coronavirus cases had been identified among mink farm workers since the start of the pandemic, but said it was unlikely that the workers were infected by the animals.
The University of Gdansk said in a statement that two scientists examined 91 mink for coronavirus and eight turned out positive.
“This is the first case of confirmed infection with SARS-CoV-2 in farm animals in Poland," the statement said.
The Chief Veterinary Inspectorate, agriculture ministry and sanitary authorities were not immediately available for comment.
Veterinary authorities said earlier this month they had ordered tests in 18 farms in four administrative regions of the country. The northern region was not among them.
Industry groups objected strongly to the tests, worrying they could lead to a nationwide cull.
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