19 January 2017
Lunar New Year- 28 January
Madelon Willemsen, Head of Office for TRAFFIC in Viet Nam said, “We are holding this competition with CWD because Vietnamese women have a great deal of influence in their families. They are providers, protectors, and teachers to the people around them. We want to drive the message that they can protect the people they care about by using legal and sustainably sourced foods.”
TRAFFIC research shows that women in Viet Nam can play an integral role in reducing demand for illegally traded wildlife products. A 2013 IPSOS study on buyer behaviour found that women in Viet Nam comprised a sizeable percentage of rhino horn consumers and buyers. Over three quarters of the people who said they were only buyers, not consumers, were women.
Using insights on the motivators for purchasing illegal wildlife like rhino horn, TRAFFIC partnered with CWD to engage women around Viet Nam, particularly in the business sector. By engaging women in business, TRAFFIC is enlisting key opinion leaders that want to take a stand against wildlife crimes.
The main event was a Masterchef-style cooking competition between seven teams of three or four members. The contestants in each team represented family members cooking together for the holidays. These teams faced-off to see who could create the best vegetarian dishes in under 70 minutes.
Mr. Pham Tuan Hai from Masterchef Viet Nam and Mr. Tran Bao Son – Ambassador of TRAFFIC’s Chi Initiative to reduce demand for rhino horn – joined the event to guide the teams and judge their dishes on their quality, presentation, and the overall message that each dish conveys. They delivered speeches calling for responsible consumption. They also committed to further promoting Chi messages to the businesses and the public.
At the end of the competition, participants signed pledges not to consume illegally traded wildlife and committed to displaying messages that promote legal and responsible practices to conserve wildlife.
This event is part of an ongoing initiative that targets the most prolific buyers and consumers of threatened wildlife products to shift their behaviour away from illegal and unsustainable activities. This project is funded by the Peace Parks Foundation and the French Development Agency (AfD) in partnership with WWF. TRAFFIC is working to engage communities throughout Viet Nam to instil zero-tolerance to wildlife consumption and create a network of key opinion leaders that can stop destructive habits and reduce wildlife crime.
Story and photos by TRAFFIC the wildlife trade monitoring network
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