Saving animals from the pot

Posted by Fuchsia on May 18, 2009
Environment, Shark's Fin, Unusual delicacies

According to this report in the Guardian, student groups in China are beginning to challenge the custom of eating endangered animals for their supposed health benefits. I remember when I was researching a piece on eating endangered species for the Financial Times a couple of years ago, I interviewed Jim Harkness of the WWF, and he told me he was hopeful that the younger generation would reject some of the more exotic delicacies favoured by their parents. I can’t say I’ve seen much evidence of this so far, but I was heartened to meet someone in Chengdu in March who said she no longer ate shark’s fin or wild animals for a mixture of health and environmental reasons (the health reasons were the high mercury content of shark, and the risk of disease from eating wild animals – as highlighted in the SARS crisis of 2003, when civet cats were fingered as a possible source of the virus).   

Anyway, let’s hope that these students in Guangzhou, which is, after all, the epicentre of Chinese trade in exotic animals, start to change opinions…

1 Comment to Saving animals from the pot

24 May 2009

Encouraging, especially if the same notion spills over into other avenues for change in China.

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