The Chinese government has issued a new draft list of livestock that can be farmed for meat in the wake of the coronavirus epidemic, which is suspected to have originated from wild animals in a Wuhan wet market.
Beijing temporarily banned all trade in wild animals for food following the Covid-19 outbreak, but the new law has yet to be finalized.
China’s Ministry of Agriculture issued a draft list of animals considered fit to be used as livestock on Wednesday night, including dietary staples such as pigs, cows, chickens and sheep, as well as “special livestock” such as a number of species of deer, alpaca and ostriches.
Two species of fox, raccoons and minks can be kept as livestock but not for their meat.
There is no mention of the species of animal which are suspected by scientists to have spread the coronavirus to humans, such as pangolins, bats and civet cats.
Dogs are also absent from the list of livestock, which, if formally enforced, would lead to China’s first countrywide ban on their consumption in a victory for animal rights activists.
The draft has still yet to be finalized and the public has until May 8 to provide feedback.
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