Progress: Global Vote Shines a Light on the Cruel Bear Bile Industry

Note: This post has been updated since it was first posted to ensure factual accuracy.

Thousands of black bears are held captive in Asia’s bile-farming industry. In a recent move that is bringing more attention to the issue, the International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN) has passed a motion calling for an end to this cruel practice.

Specifically, the new IUCN motion:

  • Calls for countries to close down bear bile farms
  • Urges China to cap the growth of the industry
  • Requests the development of independent scientific evidence to assess the impact of bear farming on wild bear populations
  • Encourages the governments of Korea and Vietnam to continue their efforts to eradicate bear farming

Endangered Asiatic black bears, also called “Moon Bears,” are prized for their gall bladders and bear bile which are used in traditional medicine. The bears are taken from the wild and confined to extremely small “crush cages.” A catheter is painfully inserted into their gall bladders to extract their bile twice a day. Bears often bang their heads against their cages in frustration, or even starve themselves in an attempt to escape the torture.

A 2011 report by TRAFFIC found bear bile extraction facilities to be a major source of illegal products entering the international market from Asia. The trade in bear bile is in violation of national laws and the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES). With their vote, the IUCN has formally recognized the practice of bear farming as being intolerable. While the IUCN motion is not legally enforceable, it is a step in the right direction that helps shine a light on this cruel, exploitative industry.

Care2 members have previously taken action to oppose the bear bile industry. Care2 will continue to share news on progress being made on this issue with the hope that we can one day end bear farming worldwide.

 

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287 comments

marie Squire
Marie Squire3 years ago

thank-you, for posting this article, Care2

Michelle M.
Michelle M.3 years ago

Unbelieveable and disgusting practice. No good can come for someone seeking aid in traditional medicine when so much suffering and pain is involved, in this case from bears. But there are so many other animals used for similar purposes (like tigers, another endangered specie) that its really so sad and frustrating not being able to help them. I can´t imagine the level of suffering the bears go through that they´d rather starve themselves to death. Such cruelty is beyond words ... I can´t even try to understand it.

Eveline M.
Eveline M.3 years ago

sorry, I am to late for this petition

Mark Donner
Mark Donner3 years ago

The penalty for the monsters who do these insane crimes in the name of their fake "culture" should be death. Modern Asia''s only culture is psychotic personal greed and nothing else. I simply spit on their bogus "tradition" and "culture".. Asia has simply had no culture, religion or tradition for five hundred years. What a bunch of greedy con artists Asian nations have become.

Claudia Cavallo
Claudia Cavallo3 years ago

This habit just makes me sick, I cannot understand why certain countries don't understand how cruel this is and why they care only about their benefits and not about the animal welfare.

Sheri D.
Sheri D.3 years ago

This is so barbaric!!!!!!!

Dianne D.
Dianne D.3 years ago

Humans are so ugly. This industry is cruel and needs to be shut down.

Marisa Malone
m i3 years ago

Oh dear, sorry folks, it doesn't all fit, the email ends:

Please advise the prime minister to overturn the decision to evict the bear rescue centre and honour your agreement.

Yours faithfully,

Please do this NOW, while we still have time. You can follow the Animals Asia.org website too for updates in the next few days.
Many thanks

Marisa Malone
m i3 years ago

Dear Sirs,

I write to express my concern that Animals Asia’s world-class bear sanctuary is to be evicted from Tam Dao National Park by the Ministry of Defence.

This is a very urgent message and I hope you will take every chance to overturn this terrible decision to evict the bears and workers at the Vietnam Sanctuary. The world is watching and many, many people in Asia and all across the world has supported the Bears and applauded the agreement that was made by the Vietnamese Government to support the Sanctuary. Please do not break the promise that was made to the world to show another side to the terrible suffering the bears have to endure by rescuing them from these terrible cages and conditions.

Animals Asia’s world-class bear sanctuary gave a lot of money, effort and love from the people involved and many supporters from around the world to create this place of peace for the bears and they cannot be allowed to be evicted from Tam Dao National Park by the Ministry of Defence.

To close down the only bear-dedicated rescue centre in Vietnam, would send a signal to the international community that Vietnam is not serious about ending bear bile farming and rehabilitating the bears that have suffered.

The Vietnam Bear Rescue Centre should be the pride of Vietnam, and a sign of the prestige of the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development.

Please advise the prime minister to overturn the decision to evict the bear rescue centre and honour you

Marisa Malone
m i3 years ago

There wasn't enough room for the whole email on my last message, here it is again, hopefully in full:
URGENT: Please if you care and wish to do something NOW: Check Animals Asia.org and sign the petition that needs to be returned by TOMORROW - 26TH OCT 2012 This must be done NOW to stop the Vietnamese Government closng down the Animals Asia Refuge & Sanctuary which was built in the last few years and is in dire danger due to a hotelier wishing to take the land to build a hotel and tourist resort.
Here is the link to the site: http://www.animalsasia.org/
Here is the email address to send your email to:
vp@mard.gov.vn
And here is an email already prepared for you to cut and paste - or you can write your own.
There are 276 comments on here, if we all do this right now, it will take a minute of your time tomorrow this petition may save the lives of these bears and help them remain in their sanctuary: PLEASE please do this, there isn't much time:
Dear Sirs,

I write to express my concern that Animals Asia’s world-class bear sanctuary is to be evicted from Tam Dao National Park by the Ministry of Defence.

This is a very urgent message and I hope you will take every chance to overturn this terrible decision to evict the bears and workers at the Vietnam Sanctuary. The world is watching and many, many people in Asia and all across the world has supported the Bears and applauded the agreement that was made by the Vietnamese Government to support the Sanct