years ago this April, Jill Robinson first walked onto a bear bile farm. On that day in April 1993, Jill could have walked away, but she chose to act and do what she could. Today, you also have a choice. If everyone reading this donated just US$20, it would pay for the care of over 150 bears at our China sanctuary for a full year. Please help us celebrate 20 years of progress. Donate US$20 today (or whatever you can afford).
Animals Asia is delighted to continue our support of the “Endangered Species-Friendly” labeling scheme launched in Singapore in March last year. Instigated by the Animal Concerns Research and Education Society (ACRES) and the Singapore TCM Organisations Committee (STOC), the scheme aims to end the trade in endangered species for Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) in Singapore.
ACRES and STOC are working together to promote herbal alternatives to bear bile and recently announced that about 1 in 4 TCM companies have signed on to the scheme, pledging not to sell products derived from any endangered species, and support from the TCM community continues to grow with a total of 274 shops now displaying the endangered species-friendly label.
The label helps consumers identify shops that do not sell products made from endangered species. While their research shows a large drop in the sale of such products in TCM in recent years, ACRES says that the trade continues to exist and fuels the exploitation of wildlife. Read more on this in the latest Press Release from ACRES below.
TCM COMMUNITY HELPS END THE TRADE IN ENDANGERED SPECIES
SINGAPORE, 14 August 2008- The Animal Concerns Research and Education Society (ACRES) is pleased to announce the strong support the TCM community has shown for its efforts to wipe out the trade in endangered species for TCM in Singapore.
274 TCM shops (from 189 companies) now display the ACRES & STOC Endangered Species-Friendly TCM Label. The landmark scheme, launched in collaboration with the Singapore TCM Organisations Committee (STOC) in March 2007, aims to end the trade in endangered species for TCM in Singapore. TCM shops committed to not selling endangered species products receive the label to place at the shop, advertising that no endangered species products are for sale.
"We are delighted that about 1 in 4 TCM companies in Singapore have signed on to the labelling scheme and we look forward to more companies pledging their support for our efforts. The scheme has also been well received by the public, many of whom have stated they will support TCM shops with the labels." said Ms. Charlene Tan, ACRES Director of Community Outreach and Investigations.
"Eu Yan Sang has always been delivering quality TCM products to our consumers. We are mindful that in the process of assuring quality, we also act responsibly so as not to harm the environment. This is why we do not sell any parts of animals that are under the endangered species and are in full support of the initiative by ACRES and STOC. The ACRES & STOC Endangered Species-Friendly TCM Label are on display at all our retails stores across the island to further raise awareness," said Mr. Vincent Lim, Managing Director of Eu Yan Sang (Singapore) Pte Ltd.
The scheme is funded by the Animals Asia Foundation. It’s founder and CEO Jill Robinson MBE said: "We are proud to be funding this increasingly successful initiative. Our work and research with endangered Moon Bears shows that they continue to be held in deplorable conditions on bear farms across China and Vietnam despite the fact that bear bile can be so easily and cheaply replaced by herbs and synthetics. Farming bears for their bile is unnecessary and certainly inhumane on the grounds that it severely and unavoidably compromises their physical and psychological health. Therefore, we are delighted to support this Endangered Species friendly TCM label where everyone can do their part in helping to protect bears and all endangered species."
ACRES previous undercover investigations revealed a continued illegal trade in endangered species for TCM in Singapore. This continued illegal trade creates a demand for wildlife products and fuels the slaughter and exploitation of wildlife.
ACRES undercover investigators have found alleged tiger bones, penises and paws and bear products on sale in Singapore. The investigations have, however, recorded a significant drop in trade levels. In 2006, a total of 23 TCM shops (20.0% of shops surveyed) were found offering alleged bear products for sale to ACRES investigators, compared to 50 shops (73.5% of shops surveyed) in a 2001 ACRES survey.
TCM plays an important role in providing complementary health care to Singaporeans. It is part of a great historical tradition and the culture of many Chinese Singaporeans and must be preserved. ACRES will continue our efforts in monitoring the illegal trade in endangered species in Singapore and also in creating awareness about the cruelty and illegality of this trade.