Friday, September 13, 2013

Fur Flies Over Lost Mink Census as Cuts Hit U.S. Economic Data

The mink industry in the U.S. is a mom-and-pop business that has gone global, making 80 percent of its sales to status-conscious Chinese fashionistas who find the fur chic. Sapphire and black pelts are in vogue this season. Or so American breeders are left to believe from anecdotal evidence after U.S. budget cuts eliminated the mink census this year. To save $60,000, the Department of Agriculture halted the annual survey that helped inform decisions on breeding and color, along with reports on commodities such as flowers, hops, catfish and rice costing $8.4 million to compile. Without the data, farmers have to guess about what’s selling. Read more here.

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