Leading Chinese food order app removes dog meat – will others follow?

17 November 2016

Sad black dog in cage

With a leading food app seeing no future in dog meat products, Animals Asia is calling on other online retailers to be the future, not the past.

Online Chinese retailer Ele.me has set the standard for Chinese food apps by banning the sale of dog meat, bear bile, bear paw, shark fin and a number of other wildlife products from their platform.

A statement on the company’s Weibo account said:

"The reality is there are no quarantine and slaughter standards for dogs in the country, and the majority of dog meat on the market is untraceable".

“In the absence of quarantine, dog meat can carry parasites, rabies, viruses and other deadly pests, so there is a large food safety risk.” 

As a result of the decision, 294 sellers and 7,733 meal options were deleted from the app.

Animals Asia Cat and Dog Welfare Director, Irene Feng said:

“Ele.me’s announcement is excellent news for animal lovers all over the country. Clearly, the company can see that there is no future in consuming dog meat or wildlife products in China and as you’d expect from a market leader, have acted accordingly.”

Mobile vendors on commercial pedestrian street in downtown (dog meat noodle on its menu)

Since the beginning of 2016, Animals Asia has been lobbying rival online retailer Meituan-Dianping to remove dog meat products from their platform.

Despite being informed of the potential health risks and dubious origin of such products the tech giant refused to delete the items.

SInce being informed of potential wrongdoing by Animals Asia, the Shanghai Food and Drug Administration has forced Meituan-Dianping to remove 11 dog meat sellers from their platform.

Irene added:

“We want to see other firms follow suit and learn from Ele.me’s example. We have been monitoring a number of competing food apps and explaining to them why it is in their interests to stop selling dog meat products. So far those companies have been uncooperative.

“It seems customer safety and the flouting of national laws can’t prompt Meituan-Dianping to change, but we hope self preservation will. Ele.me’s announcement could be the catalyst needed for a ripple effect among their competitors by showing them China’s future is dog meat-free.”

Animals Asia is continuing to lobby Meituan-Dianping to remove dog meat items from their platform and is highlighting their refusal to do so on Chinese social media such as Weibo and WeChat.