“List of Edible Terrestrial Animals” for Comments: Dogs Are Prohibited from Eating for Companion Animals

On April 8, the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Affairs published the “National Catalogue of Animal Genetic Resources (Draft for Comments)” (“Catalogue” for short) on its official website and publicly solicited opinions from the public.


China Biodiversity Conservation and Green Development Foundation (CBCGDF) noted that the “Catalogue” includes a total of 31 species of domestic and traditional livestock and poultry. The animals listed in the “Catalogue” are managed according to livestock and poultry and can be used for commercial purposes such as food.


The “Catalogue” solicits opinions for one month, and the feedback of the comments ends on May 8, 2020.


The “Catalogue” includes 31 species of domestic and traditional livestock and poultry, including 18 species of traditional livestock and poultry, including pigs, ordinary cattle, zebu, buffalo, yak, large cattle, sheep, goats, horses, donkeys , camel, rabbit, chicken, duck, goose, turkey, pigeon, quail, etc .; 13 species of special livestock, including sika deer, red deer, reindeer, alpaca, guinea fowl, pheasant, partridge, mallard, ostrich, mink, silver fox, blue fox, raccoon, etc.


In response to whether the dogs with high attention have been listed in the “Catalogue”, the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Affairs responded in the explanation that with the progress of human civilization and the public’s concern and preference for animal protection, dogs have been “specialized” from traditional livestock to companion animals. In general, it is not regarded as livestock and poultry in the world, and China should not include it in livestock and poultry management.


After the outbreak of the COVID-19, the Standing Committee of the National People’s Congress promulgated the “Decision on the Comprehensive Prohibition of Illegal Wildlife Trade, the Elimination of the Abuse of Wild Animals and the Effective Protection of the People’s Health and Safety” (hereinafter referred to as the “Decision”), clearly and comprehensively prohibit the consumption of “terrestrial wildlife with important ecological, scientific, and social values” and other terrestrial wildlife protected by the state, including artificial farming and artificial breeding of terrestrial wildlife. Animals included in the livestock and poultry genetic resources list belong to livestock and poultry, and the provisions of the Animal Husbandry Law apply.


After the release of the “Decision”, the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Areas accelerated the formulation of the “Catalogue” on the basis of two national surveys of livestock and poultry genetic resources and understanding the background of genetic resources, solicited the opinions of 36 central departments and 31 provincial people’s governments and the Xinjiang Production and Construction Corps, held special symposiums to listen to the opinions of relevant scientific research institutes, colleges, universities, industry, and other experts and scholars, and constantly revised and improved to form the “Catalogue”.


In the process of formulating the “Catalogue”, based on the reality of China’s livestock and poultry farming, strictly grasp the four principles: adhere to science, the livestock and poultry listed in the “Catalogue” must undergo long-term artificial breeding and domestication, and have stable artificial selection of economic traits; Focus on safety, give priority to ensuring food safety, public health safety, and ecological safety; respect national customs, consider the needs of multi-ethnic production and life, and traditional culture; integrate with international standards, and refer to internationally accepted practices and international practices.


For special livestock and poultry, the “Catalogue” states that sika deer have a long breeding history and have formed a perfect industrial system; red deer have traditional feeding habits in western minority areas such as Xinjiang, Gansu, Ningxia and Inner Mongolia; Reindeer, mainly distributed in Genhe City and its surrounding areas in Inner Mongolia, is an important means of production and living of the Ewenki nationality; alpaca, for introducing breeds, has a long history of domestication and multiple uses; Guinea fowl, pheasant, partridge, mallard, ostrich (including African ostrich, American ostrich, Australian ostrich (emu)), etc., most of them are imported from abroad, and the breeding technology is mature; fur animals such as mink, silver fox, blue fox, raccoon, etc., China has cultivated varieties suitable for domestic use, mainly used for fur processing and product export, not for food.


Shi Kun, director of the Wildlife Research Institute of Beijing Forestry University, said in an interview with the media that the “Decision” clarified the animals included in the livestock and poultry genetic resources catalog, which belong to livestock and poultry, applicable to the provisions of the Animal Husbandry Law. This shows that “as long as animals that have been farmed are listed in the animal genetic resources of the State Council’s Animal Husbandry and Veterinary Administration and published in accordance with the law, they can be used in the direction prescribed by them. Those listed as edible are allowed to be eaten.”

For terrestrial animals, the animal husbandry and veterinary administrative department of the State Council has formulated and published the animal species listed in the “Catalogue of Animal Genetic Resources” that are allowed to be edible. All other terrestrial wild animals outside the catalogue are prohibited.


(Photo source: Internet)

Original Chinese article:


By / Maggie




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