Denmark’s mink coronavirus outbreak could affect your Christmas tree - here’s why

Tuesday, 24th November 2020, 4:20 pm
Updated Tuesday, 24th November 2020, 4:20 pm

Denmark’s ongoing mink coronavirus outbreak could have surprising knock-on effects for your Christmas, as the country is struggling to export its usual bounty of Nordmann Fir Christmas trees to the UK.

Denmark typically sells approximately one million trees to the UK every year, and the Nordmann Fir breed is typically among the most popular.

The Danish Nordmann Fir is described by Denmark’s Christmas Tree Grower’s Association as “the Rolls-Royce of Christmas trees.”

One online retailer told MailOnline that there could be a shortage, as “many retailers import huge volumes of trees from Denmark” and “suppliers are struggling to get through.”

Heavily impacted by restrictions

Producers of the trees in Denmark have been heavily impacted by restrictions aimed at preventing the spread of a mutated coronavirus strain which originated in the country’s mink farms.

Denmark is the world’s largest mink fur exporter, but the government decided earlier this month to cull the entire population of around 17 million mink, due to concerns they were helping to spread a mutated form of Covid.

Will there be a shortage of Christmas trees?

Many people will already have had to take a different approach to choosing their Christmas tree this year due to lockdown, with many retailers closed.

Online retailers have seen major increases in demand, with one business owner reporting a 1,000 per cent increase on sales compared with the same period last year.

While the UK buys around 10 million trees every year, only around three million are imported.

Speaking to MailOnline, Heather Parry of the British Christmas Tree Growers Association (BCTGA) said that BCTGA members grow the majority of Christmas trees for the UK market.

She comments, “Brexit and Covid - including Mink Covid in Denmark - have had an impact on imported trees but they are getting through customs, albeit more slowly than normal. The vast majority of the eight to 10 million Christmas trees sold in this country are grown in the UK.”