2 June 2022
Live mink can no longer be legally imported or bred in Bulgaria, following concerns over threats to native ecosystems and biodiversity from escaped animals.
On 1 June, the Bulgarian Minister of Environment and Water Borislav Sandov announced that he had signed the order to bring the ban into effect.
The decision was taken based on concerns over the environment and biodiversity, as the risk of American mink (Neovison vison) escaping from fur farms poses a serious threat to native species.
Conditions at the only mink farm in our country are unfavourable and are the reason that in recent years mink have escaped to enter territories of wildlife and cause damage.
Borislav Sandov, Minister of Environment and Water
The American mink is now widespread throughout the European Union and has caused significant adverse impacts on native wildlife, after individuals escaped from fur farms.
According to the Ministry, the species is included in the list of 100 most dangerous invasive alien species in Europe and is a priority invasive alien species for Bulgaria.
We thank Minister Sandov for this really important and very useful decision for the nature of Bulgaria. This decision is based on scientific and expert data on the damage from the breeding of the species American mink. At the same time, it is a solution that will prevent huge damage to wildlife and end the suffering of millions of American minks that are bred for their fur in cruel conditions! It’s just a ban order, but it’s so important to nature and the animals.
Petya Altimirska, head of CAAI
Whilst this ban will effectively render mink farming impossible in Bulgaria, it does not cover other species commonly farmed for their fur such as foxes, chinchillas and raccoon dogs.
Our member CAAI is calling for a wider ban on the breeding and keeping of any species for the purpose of fur farming in the country.
The European Citizens’ Initiative Fur Free Europe asks for a ban on all fur farming and the placement of farmed fur products in the European Union.