If you use or practice Traditional Chinese Medicine, you are in a strong position to help stop animal cruelty in Asia. Will you?
You might already be aware of Asia’s bear farms. They currently hold around 12,000 Asiatic black bears, an endangered species.
You may not know that these ‘farms’ keep bears in appalling conditions to produce bile for use in Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM). There’s nothing traditional about this – bear farming is just decades old. In China, bile is extracted from the gall bladders of live bears through a permanent wound, reopened once or twice a day; in Vietnam, bile is repeatedly extracted from live bears using a long syringe; in South Korea, bears are slaughtered for their bile at 10 years of age.
Regardless of method, many bears will suffer the intensely distressing and unnatural experience of being held in cramped, bare cages every day of their lives.
This continues despite respected TCM authorities – including the American Association of Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine and professors of the Beijing University of Chinese Medicine – declaring that the use of bear bile is inconsistent with the modern practice of traditional medicine, based on the cruelty involved and the existence of many effective alternatives.
Use YOUR influence: help end bear farming
Many Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) manufacturers in Asia make products containing bear bile. Sometimes the same companies sell herbal versions in overseas markets.
In an effort to end bear farming, we want manufacturers to know that any use of bear bile – regardless of which products, or where they are sold – will repel current and potential customers.
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