MINSK – Up to 90% of fur pelts produced in Belarus is bound for export, Natalia Sonich the head of the main directorate for livestock at the Agriculture and Food Ministry, told the media BelTA has learned.
“In Belarus there are eight fur farms. Six of them are subordinate to Belkoopsoyuz, two to the Agriculture and Food Ministry. Every year up to 90% of fur pelts produced in Belarus is sold for export,” Natalia Sonich noted.
The concept to develop the fur farming industry in the country was revised in 2015. “We recommitted themselves to the Scandinavian genotype (short-haired mink). Long-haired mink is not in demand currently. Cultivation of foxes and white foxes was suspended,” Natalia Sonich said. With the support of the Agriculture and Food Ministry, in accordance with the state agrarian business development program in Belarus for 2016-2020, the budgetary funds are allocated to purchase the promising pedigree young minks from abroad and to promote sales within the country. The Scandinavian pedigree short-haired minks are used for breeding and raising the efficiency of the fur farms.
Belkoopsoyuz successfully cooperates with Europe's largest fur auction Saga Furs OYJ in Helsinki, Finland. Brokers from all over the world buy Belarusian furs. The Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Agriculture and Food Ministry, the Belarusian fur farms got certified as suppliers of fur raw materials to the Chinese market. Belarus shipped $1.5 million worth of fur pelts to China in 2016 and $770,700 in January-November 2017. The effort on the diversification of sales markets continues.
In 2016 the Grodno fur farm of Belkoopsoyuz's Belkoopvneshtorg sold the first batch of young stock (970 animals) to Russia. This brought twice as much as the export of raw furs. Natalia Sonich emphasized the profitability of breeding and selling young stock.