WASHINGTON, Nov. 22, 2022 /PRNewswire/ — Animal rights extremists continue to terrorize rural farmers, having released close to 40,000 mink in Van Wert County, Ohio this past week. Those responsible have vandalized mink barns and destroyed farmers’ property, leaving a community on edge and in fear of who or what may be next. Vandals released mink, knowing that they most likely would die of starvation or be run over by vehicles. Yet, leading animal activist groups like PETA, HSUS and others remain silent.
The most recent release by animal activists is yet another attempt to destroy the animal use industry, as they have called for the complete liberation of all animals to include cow, sheep, mink, etc. Based on previous attacks, more than half of the mink released will not survive. "These attacks aren’t new, rural farmers have been targets since the early 1980’s and have continued to suffer in silence through propaganda spread by extremists," says Mark Oaten, CEO, International Fur Federation (IFF).
In 2006, the mink industry led the charge to pass the Animal Enterprise Terrorism Act (AETA) into US federal law which strictly prohibits any person from engaging in certain conduct "for the purpose of damaging or interfering with the operations of an animal enterprise." Despite the federal law, the organizations responsible are causing irreversible harm to family farms.
Mink were first pioneered in the U.S. more than 150 years ago, during the Civil War, at Lake Casadacka, New York. Since that time, mink farming has been passed down from generation to generation in mostly rural committees with animal health and welfare remaining the top priority of mink farmers. Mink farmers have strict operating guidelines governing the humane care of animals. Farmers follow comprehensive animal husbandry practices developed with scientists, veterinarians, and welfare experts, with rigorous standards for nutrition, housing, biosecurity, veterinary care, and humane harvesting. Like in all animal agriculture, mink farmers are subject to state and federal laws.
The farms impacted in both Michigan and Ohio are working closely with law enforcement agencies to identify those individuals and groups who continue to instigate such violence against farmers, retailers, and manufactures within the animal-use industry.
IFF calls on leading fur-free animal rights groups to condemn the behavior that has led to this act of violence.
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