Code of Practice

Canada Mink Breeders Association Position

The Canada Mink Breeders Association believes in the responsible and sustainable use of animals to meet our intrinsic needs as human beings. This responsibility includes incorporating good animal welfare practices into the farm operations of members. This is important from a moral perspective and also makes good business sense, as a content and well cared for animal (whether cows producing milk or mink producing fur) will produce a better product than an animal under stress.

National Code of Practice

In Canada, farmers abide by industry standards outlined in the National Code of Practice for the Care and Handling of Farmed Mink, to ensure that animals are well cared for, and harvested humanely.  This code was developed under the auspices of Agriculture Canada with the collaboration of producers, government representatives, animal-welfare agencies, and veterinarians and scientists. Scientific research findings are the basis for these standards.

This Code represents a consensus amongst diverse stakeholder groups. A key feature of NFACC’s Code development process is the Scientific Committee. It is widely accepted that animal welfare Codes, guidelines, standards or legislation should take advantage of the best available research.

A Scientific Committee review of priority animal welfare issues for the mink provided valuable information to the Code Development Committee in developing this Code of Practice. The Scientific Committee report is peer reviewed and publicly available, enhancing the transparency and credibility of the Code.

The booklet covers the standards for care and operational practices on mink farms:

Section 1: Accommodations and Housing

  • Site Selection
  • Housing
  • Environmental Management

Section 2: Biosecurity

  • Access Management
  • Animal Management
  • Operational Management

Section 3: Feed and Water

  • Nutrition
  • Feed Management
  • Water Management

Section 4: Health and Welfare Management

  • Relationship of Animal Health to Animal Welfare
  • Stockmanship Skills Related to Animal Health and Welfare
  • Veterinary Care / Health Management
  • Sick or Injured Animals

Section 5: Husbandry

  • Animal Handling
  • Breeding Period
  • Whelping and Lactation Period
  • Weaning

Section 6: Euthanasia

  • Methods
  • Evidence to Confirm Death

Section 7: Transport

  • Pre-Transport Decision Making