Why Bushmeat Should Not Be Banned
University of Queensland, Centre for Nutrition and Food Sciences, Australia
With the initial belief that the SARS-CoV-2, (COVID-19 virus) came from exotic animals whose meat was being sold at a wet market in Whuan, China, there were calls all over the world that bushmeat should be banned from all markets worldwide. During May 2017 to November 2019, 47,381 animals from 38 species were sold at this specific market. Numerous scientists and organisations believed that prohibiting the sale and consumption of wild meat would protect public health and biodiversity. Other scientists argued that this sudden removal of wild meat could impact negatively on people and wildlife; up to 15 countries have been identified as losing food security if such a ban were to be implemented. It has been calculated that if the protein supplied by wild meat had to be replaced by traditionally farmed livestock, an additional 124,000 km2 of land would need to be transformed into agricultural land which could drive >260 species towards extinction. This presentation discusses these issues and suggests a more holistic approach to address these matters due to the complex nature of the interconnectivity of global food systems and nature around the background of vulnerable people, particularly the silent masses in developing countries.
Keywords: Holistic approach, public health, wildlife
Contact Address: Louw Hoffman, University of Queensland, Centre for Nutrition and Food Sciences, QLD 4072 Brisbane St Lucia, Australia, e-mail: louwrens.hoffmanuq.edu.au