(385) 401-4301 info@uarc.io PO Box 3451 Salt Lake City, UT 84110

Since the first reports of COVID-19 outbreaks on Utah fur farms, UARC has recognized the grave public health threat posed by the operation of these fur farms, which will act as an enduring reservoir for the virus that causes COVID-19 and also a source of mutations for the virus into forms that could be more lethal, transmissible, or evasive of our therapeutics.

Below is a basic timeline of our efforts to capture the attention of decisionmakers, as well as links to original source material.

  • August 19, 2020: UARC writes to Governor Gary Herbert asking that he take seriously the recent reports of COVID-19 outbreaks on Utah mink farms and suspend all breeding operations. UARC also starts a public grassroots lobbying effort encouraging Utahns to contact Governor Herbert’s office to voice their concerns.
  • October 13, 2020: Following reports of several more ongoing COVID-19 outbreaks on Utah fur farms, UARC again writes to Governor Herbert pleading with his office to take the matter seriously and suspend breeding operations.
  • October 14, 2020: UARC releases a leaked video from the Fur Commission USA’s annual meeting, held via Zoom. In the leaked clip, Dr. John Easley, DVM, states that researchers have demonstrated that the virus that causes COVID-19 “was brought on to farms by humans, the virus changed in the mink, and that changed virus was then transmitted back to people, and the people that got infected, transmitted that virus to other people.” This alarming statement was in glaring contradiction with public assurances from Utah’s state veterinarian and other public statements issued by the fur industry.
  • October 14, 2020: The Salt Lake Tribune reports on the leaked fur industry video as well as UARC’s efforts pushing for a ban on mink farm breeding.
  • October 14, 2020: UARC submits a public records request pursuant to Utah’s state records law, GRAMA, with the Utah Department of Agriculture and Food (UDAF) for various records related to the ongoing COVID-19 outbreaks at Utah mink farms as well as the state’s handling of the crisis.
  • October 19, 2020: UDAF responds to UARC’s October 14, 2020 GRAMA request, denying access to the vast majority of the records sought.
  • October 30, 2020: UARC holds a public protest at the K&J Fur Farm, located at 1440 W. Main Street, Lehi, UT 84043.
UARC demonstrators outside the K&J Fur Farm in Lehi, Utah.