COVID19: Chinese city of Wuhan bans consumption of wild animals

Posted on: Thu 21-05-2020

Consumption of wild animals in Wuhan been banned weeks after Dr. Anthony Fauci called on China to scrap its wet markets. Pangolin will be taken off the menu at Wuhan’s wet markets after a ban on breeding, hunting and consuming wild animals.  

Consumption of wild animals in the Chinese city of Wuhan, the epicenter of the coronavirus outbreak, has been banned just weeks after America’s top infectious-diseases expert Dr. Anthony Fauci called for an end to wet markets trading in exotic meat.

Lion, tiger, peacock and pangolin are now off the menu after the municipal government in Wuhan announced this week that a new policy has come into effect banning breeding, hunting and consumption of wild animals. The new law will be in place for five years.

Other species including bat and snake have also been banned as part of a national push to prevent the population from eating wildlife.

It is thought the sale and consumption of exotic meats in wet markets has spawned diseases. The first cases of coronavirus are thought to have come from a wet market in Wuhan, in the province of Hubei.

Scientists think the virus originated in bats and transferred to humans through another animal. This has shone a spotlight on the global market for exotic meats, the way they are procured, and hygiene around their sale and consumption.

The market for wild animals is worth an estimated £60 million ($73 million) and provides work for as many as 14 million people.

Last month, when asked about wet markets in a television interview, Fauci said: “I think we should shut down those things right away. It boggles my mind how when we have so many diseases that emanate out of that unusual human-animal interface, that we don’t just shut it down. I don’t know what else has to happen to get us to appreciate that.”

By Rupert Steiner