How to Transform the Domestication and Breeding Industry of Wild Animals Under the “Comprehensive Ban of Wildlife” Decision (I)
2020/5/19 15:54:00 本站

Authors: Zhou Jinfeng, Linda Wong, Wang Jing

On February 24th, 020, the 16th Meeting of the Standing Committee of the 13th National People’s Congress deliberated and adopted the “Decision on Banning Illegal Wildlife Trade in an All-round Way, Eliminating Bad Habit of Eating Wild Animals, and Ensuring the People’s Life and Health and Safety (hereinafter referred to as the “Decision”), which shall come into effect as of the date of promulgation. Article 2 of the Decision stipulates that the consumption of “terrestrial wild animals with important ecological, scientific and social values” and other terrestrial wild animals protected by the state shall be prohibited in an all-round way, including those artificially bred and raised.


This means that the wildlife market and trade for the purpose of eating will be completely banned in the whole country. It also means that the increasingly prosperous wildlife domestication and breeding industry in recent years will face the industrial transformation. Therefore, in the context of the green transformation of China's economic development, what is the future of this large-scale wildlife domestication and breeding industry (this paper refers to terrestrial wildlife)? How to realize the green transformation? This is also the focus of this article.


The industry will face a big reshuffle


Wild animals and human beings share nature and live in the “life community” of the earth. Since entering the era of industrial civilization, the impact of human activities on the environment has been increasing day by day, and the utilization of wildlife has been accelerating, which has brought about a sharp loss of biodiversity. The warning of the novel coronavirus epidemic, as Engels pointed out more than one hundred years ago, "we should not be overindulging in our human victory in nature, and for every such victory, nature will retaliate against us." So, how to realize the vision of the ecological civilization of "harmonious coexistence between man and nature"? We need the whole society to treat wildlife correctly from the perspective of maintaining public health and taking the road of sustainable development. However, the starting point of "development and utilization" used in the revision of China's wildlife protection law in 2016 has been widely criticized after the outbreak of new coronavirus.


The Wildlife Protection Law, which was revised and implemented in 2016 and promulgated in 2017, stipulates that "the State shall implement the licensing system for the state key protected wildlife in artificial breeding. Artificial breeding of wildlife under special state protection shall be subject to the approval of the Department in charge of wildlife protection under the people's Government of the province, autonomous region, or municipality directly under the central government unless there are special provisions under the State Council. ". This regulation provides a legal channel for wildlife protection and artificial domestication.


According to the idea of “conservation and utilization”, every year, China’s finance at all levels subsidizes a large number of wild animal domestication and breeding industries. According to the available data, in 2019, there are about 1,500 wild animal artificial breeding enterprises in Zhejiang Province, which are distributed in 89 counties (cities and districts) of 11 cities, with an annual output value of about 5 billion RMB. According to the data of artificial arrangement after the outbreak of the novel coronavirus epidemic in Hebei Province, there are more than 12,000 land-based wild animal artificial breeding and breeding households and units, which are distributed in 160 counties (cities and districts). There are also relevant documents and research reports to guide and encourage the domestication and reproduction of wild animals. It can be said that under the circumstances of local support, legal permission, and administrative supervision, the wild animal domestication, and breeding industry has spread all over the north and the south in recent years, and the enterprise-scale operation and individual retail operation are widespread.


In addition to the lack of standardized inspection and quarantine procedures and the widespread suspicion of illegally hunting wild animal resources for interests, the blooming wild animal domestication and breeding industry also cause water and soil pollution, production safety and environmental safety problems due to factors such as the substandard breeding environment.


Although there are still some problems to be solved in cracking down on the illegal trade and consumption of wild animals, and it will take some time to improve the legislative and judicial fields, the consumption of wild animals has been put on the brakes all over the country, which is bound to affect the wild animal domestication and breeding industry. At present, the catalog of China's livestock and poultry genetic resources is being adjusted, and many places are still waiting for the publication of the catalog list to carry out the next work related to the domestication and reproduction of wild animals. However, it is obvious that the industry of wild animal breeding is no longer the direction of industrial development, and some places have begun to ban and clean up the places of domestication and reproduction of wild animals within their jurisdiction, this further requires a rapid change in the concept of aquaculture development.


This not only requires a comprehensive, profound, and correct understanding and treatment of wild animals in all fields of society, the cessation of eating and abnormal contact with wild animals, and the avoidance of "huge disasters like the new crown epidemic will still follow". For example, the famous infectious diseases expert and the representative of the World Health Organization (WHO), W. Ian Lipkin, came to Wuhan to understand the epidemic situation and made it clear: "please close the wildlife trading market permanently and effectively supervise the wildlife, livestock and slaughtering industry. If the wildlife trade is not closed, there may be new outbreaks in 10 years."


Academician Zhong Nanshan, head of the high-level expert group of the National Health Commission, also pointed out that, “eating wild animals is a bad habit of human beings. Let’s not forget that there have been three coronavirus infections in the 21st century, the first is SARS, the second is MERS, and the third is the novel coronavirus (COVID-19).” Two of the three kinds of viruses have serious outbreaks in China and are closely related to edible wild animals. What’s more, we need the whole society to learn from the bad habit of eating wildlife and quickly introduce industrial transformation plans.


Nowadays, ecological civilization puts forward new requirements for green production and lifestyle. From the aspect of lifestyle, we should get rid of the bad habit of indiscriminate eating of wild animals; from the aspect of production mode, we should completely prohibit the illegal trade of wild animals. This also puts forward the requirements of green transformation for the wildlife domestication and breeding industry, and the adoption of the decision on February 24th marks the beginning of the great transformation period of wildlife utilization industry.


Original Chinese article:

By / Xue Tongtong Modified / Maggie