Dozens of drug stores in China have stopped selling bear bile products after a company accused of torturing bears to extract bile became the center of a storm of criticism over a shares issue plan.
TCM stores in Chengdu in Sichuan Province and Shenyang in Liaoning Province no longer have bear bile products on sale.
Animal welfare groups and members of the public have been protesting against the shares issue plan by Fujian Province-based Guizhentang Pharmaceutical Development Co Ltd. It keeps 470 bears to extract bile for traditional Chinese medicine.
The Animals Asia Foundation said bile extraction, which involves inserting a catheter into a bear’s abdomen, causes great suffering.
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Bear bile is used in traditional Asian medicine as a supposed cure for liver and eye ailments, to remove toxins and eliminate fevers. The anti-bile movement was bolstered by Former NBA star Yao Ming who called on the public to protect the animals.
There are still 68 licensed bear farms in China. This is a positive signal that this atrocity is become less acceptable and, hopefully, will fully disappear as a practice everywhere.