New agriculture minister Rasmus Prehn told local media that the excavation was embarrassing as he witnessed the start of the process on Thursday. The order to cull in November last year prompted Denmark’s agriculture minister to step down after the government admitted it did not have a legal basis to order healthy mink to be killed. Our Standards: The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.
Tests over three days ending on Saturday will check the texture and smell of the dead animals and how well they burn. Some mink soon resurfaced from the sandy soil after gasses from decomposition pushed them out of the ground, prompting complaints from locals about possible health risks.
Under a government plan, excavation will begin in late-May and all mink will be dug up and burned at 13 central heating plants around the country by mid-July. Most of the mink were burned in waste incinerators, but limited capacity forced authorities to bury some four million mink, or 13 million tonnes, at military areas in western Denmark.
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