Weak Links

Through our research into the US fur industry, we believe these are the weakest links:

Feed suppliers
Feed is the single biggest expense in raising mink. Even a small increase in feed costs would destroy many – if not most – fur farms. As an example, when the Fur Breeder’s Agricultural Cooperative stopped delivering to a small town in Utah (forcing them to use another supplier or make their own), at least two fur farms there were forced to close.

Mink research
The Fur Commission USA spends a full 25% of its budget on mink farming research. Through research into feed, disease, pelt quality, and more, the US fur industry maintains a competitive edge over other markets. A list of the research FCUSA find most important (as expressed through funding) can be read here.

Vaccine production
According to a Fur Commission USA poll, a disease outbreak is their second biggest fear as fur farmers (after attacks by animal rights activists). An aluetian disease outbreak can wipe out a mink farm in a matter of weeks. There is only one remaining company producing vaccines: United Vaccines, with three locations around Madison, WI.

Processing plants
Right now there is a severe shortage of facilities able to process raw animal skins. Currently, the only large-scale operation is the North American Fur Auctions processing plant in Stoughton, Wisconsin (near Madison). This plant has trouble handling current volume, and is an extremely significant lynchpin.