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Smart Trade – NO, Foolish Assumptions – YES

By |2019-05-24T19:10:38+10:00June 27th, 2016|BTB|

As many of you know, I have long asked the people who believe in legalising the international trade in rhino horn to produce their business case and user analysis. The reason I have asked these questions is that since I started interviewing the primary users of rhino horn, driving the current rhino killing spree, it became apparent straight away that they don’t see horn from a farmed rhino as a substitute product. I wrote about this in: http://breakingthebrand.org/farmed-rhino-horn-not-seen-as-substitute-product/ As I say in the blog: When I was in South Africa earlier this year (Feb 2015) all my meetings clearly showed that very few people understood the nature of the demand or the users of genuine rhino horn. This is obviously [...]

Demand Reduction – Take it Personally (#GoneForGood)

By |2019-05-24T19:09:29+10:00May 14th, 2016|BTB|

As a kid in the UK in the 70’s and 80’s, I was addicted to nature TV, Animal Magic, Survival, Wildlife on One, Life on Earth, Johnny Morris, David Bellamy and David Attenborough. The emerging debates at the time about how people needed to protect the natural world and how you could and should take action resonated with me. In parallel with this came Anita Roddick, an activist, environmental campaigner and Founder of The Body Shop. Though I never quite forgave her for selling The Body Shop to L’Oréal, I continued to follow her work; her book Take It Personally: How to Make Conscious Choices to Change the World is another reason I started Breaking The brand. So when it comes [...]

Research Confirms Preference for Traditional Animal Medicinal Materials (TAMs) Derived from Wild Animals.

By |2019-05-24T19:10:26+10:00March 18th, 2016|BTB|

Rhino Horn User Analysis and Pro-Trade/No-Trade Debate As many of Breaking The Brand’s supporters know, I have long said that the pro-rhino-horn-trade proponents have no understanding of the current demand or users; I have not once seen any form of customer analysis, which I outlined in a previous blog post. Time and time again they have been asked to produce their user demand analysis and they haven’t; at least now they admit that they don’t understand the nature of the demand: https://www.rhinoalive.com/rhino-horn-trade-faq/(pro-trade website) and highlight their gobsmacking belief, I quote from their website ‘The best way to learn about the market is to engage it via legal trade.’ Wow, what can you say to that ridiculous statement! The reality is that [...]

How Much Is Spent On Rhino Horn Demand Reduction Campaigns?

By |2019-05-24T19:10:15+10:00February 10th, 2016|BTB|

When you add up everything that is being spent to save the rhino from extinction in the wild, then it would become a teeny tiny fraction of 1%. The vast majority of the money donated to rhino conservation is spent on the ground on protection measures – fencing, rangers, equipment, dehorning etc. Only a relatively small percentage is spent in demand countries. Of that percentage, again only a small fraction goes into what can be classed as demand reduction campaigns. Breaking The Brand Basic Definitions As an introduction to this blog, I must qualify Breaking The Brand’s definition of what constitutes a demand reduction campaign: It is a campaign that elicits an emotional response in the current user groups to [...]

Re-Inventing Magnificence – Conservation is the New Black

By |2019-05-24T19:10:04+10:00January 11th, 2016|BTB|

As some BTB supporters already know, I recently began a Visiting Research Fellowship at the Australian National University working in the area of cultural anthropology. The focus of the research is: How do current and historical cultures ascribe status to wildlife ‘products’ and what turns them into luxury items? The aim is to understand how this process works; of particular interest is how this knowledge may be utilised to achieve the reverse effect – turning a current luxury item (such as rhino horn) back into something no longer considered a luxury or desirable. This insight can then form the basis for creating demand reduction initiatives. As part of the initial literature search on the nature of luxury the concept of [...]

See Clearly – The Implications of South Africa’s Domestic Trade in Rhino Horn

By |2019-05-24T19:09:54+10:00December 27th, 2015|BTB|

In an article I wrote in July 2015 Desire To Supply Rhino Horn Drives Manufacture Of Demand:  I pointed out that while the South African government continues to keep the option of a legal trade in rhino horn on the table, the pro-trade lobby will focus on creating a ‘legal’ sales channel. To-date, the options discussed are: A legalisation of international trade, or A one-off sale of their stockpile, or Overturning the domestic trade ban in South Africa In recent weeks, and based solely on a legal technicality (see box on the right), the ban on domestic trade in South Africa was overturned.  Minister Molewa immediately appealed the ruling and so, for now, the rhino horn domestic trade ban is [...]

Reckless Australian Auction Rooms and Weak Domestic Wildlife Laws May Contribute to Worldwide Rhino Slaughter

By |2019-05-24T19:09:41+10:00November 1st, 2015|BTB|

I, like many people around the world, was disgusted at the sales of rhino horn in Sydney and Melbourne last week. As someone who calls Australia home feeling ashamed of the stupidity, naivety, greed and ignorance that enables this to happen was also part of the list of emotions I experienced. Having visited many rhino range countries and spoken with the people dealing with the tragedy of the current rhino slaughter, who are too regularly confronted with the death and mutilation of the rhinos in their care, I can only imagine how angry they must feel (http://www.sapeople.com/2015/10/28/stroop-should-rhino-horn-have-been-auctioned-in-australia/  at this uncaring act. Peter Fish’s first line in his Australian Financial Revive article reporting on the sales must have felt like someone [...]

Pro-Trade Response to Blog

By |2019-05-24T19:13:50+10:00September 27th, 2015|BTB|

Pro-Trade Response to BTB Blog: Viet Nam’s wealthy buyers of rhino don’t see horn from farmed rhino as a substitute product. http://breakingthebrand.org/farmed-rhino-horn-not-seen-as-substitute-product/ Given that the blog talks about the wealthy Vietnamese elite who can afford genuine, wild rhino horn are not interested in a farmed ‘product’, which is a critical point in the legalised trade debate, it was not a surprises that this blog was shared with the group: The Great BIG NO Trade/PRO Trade Rhino Debate. So far it has generated 5 comments and 3 patterns of response: Not a single rhino in SA is not behind a fence Breaking The Brand has not produced the desired results Breaking The Brand wants donations Before I responds to these three [...]