Meat+Poultry - February 2021 - 14

WA S H I N G T O N

Preventing pandemics
Two members of Congress reintroduced a bipartisan bill that
would shut down commercial wildlife
markets, end the trade in live wildlife
for human consumption and stop
wildlife trade in the United States.
US Representatives Mike Quigley
(D-Ill.) and Fred Upton (R-Mich.)
previously introduced the Preventing
Future Pandemics Act in September
2020. Senators Cory Booker (D-NJ) and
John Cornyn (R-Texas) introduced a
companion bill in the US Senate and
plan to re-introduce their bill soon.
" For the sake of our health,
our economy, and our livelihoods,
preventing the next pandemic
before it starts is perhaps the most
important thing we must do. For
that reason, Representative Upton
and I re-introduced the Preventing
Future Pandemics Act at the very
first opportunity on the day the new
congress is sworn in, " Quigley said. " We
were thrilled with the robust, bipartisan
support the bill received last year and
we're committed to building on that
momentum to see this bill become law. "
Federal lawmakers introduced the
proposed legislation on the grounds
that zoonotic diseases such as Ebola,
HIV/AIDS and the coronavirus initially
emerged from wildlife and then jumped
to people through activities such as

butchering or eating wildlife. Ending the
trade of wildlife for human consumption
would be one strategy to prevent the
emergence of another disease.
" The simple fact is that through
continued consumption of wildlife
and the persistence of the unsanitary
conditions at wildlife markets, the
emergence of the next zoonotic
pandemic is a matter of when, not
if. Close contact between humans
and wild animals, and especially
human consumption, is a threat to
global health. As climate change
and encroaching development drive
people and wildlife closer together,
it is imperative that we stop thinking
of conservation and public health
as separate issues, " Quigley said in
September. " The Preventing Future
Pandemics Act takes aim at wildlife
markets and the trade that supplies
them, positioning America as the global
leader in replacing wild protein sources
with safe alternatives and fighting to
ensure that nothing like the COVID-19
pandemic happens again. "
Animal welfare groups that support
efforts to close commercial wildlife
markets and end trade in wildlife
for human consumption supported
the action.
" We applaud Representatives Mike
Quigley and Fred Upton for their
tremendous work to shutter the ghastly
wet markets that continue to serve as
incubators for plagues like COVID-19, "

said Marty Irby, executive director
at Animal Wellness Action. " The
pandemic we face today has clearly
proven that live animal markets filled
with bats, pangolins, and other exotic
creatures must be eradicated not only
for the well-being of animals but for the
safety and security of the human race
and global economy. "
The Preventing Future Pandemics
Act would make ending the import,
export and sale of live wildlife for
human consumption in the United
States part of the US foreign policy by
directing the US State Department to
collaborate with international partners
to shut down commercial wildlife
markets and end trade in food products
derived from wildlife.
" From SARS to Ebola to COVID-19,
the risk of disease transmission from
wildlife to people is a persistent
threat to global public health, and
we know that commercial wildlife
markets and the international wildlife
trade significantly increase that risk, "
Booker said in September. " As we
continue to fight to get the spread of
COVID-19 under control here in the
United States, we must also be working
with our international partners to
prevent another deadly pandemic from
occurring; that means working urgently
to shut down commercial wildlife
markets and end the international trade
in live wildlife. "
E R I C A S H A FFE R | e s h a f f e r @s o s l a n d.c o m

- CORY BOOKER

14

MEAT+ POULTRY | 02.21 | www.meatpoultry.com

Gary Blakeley/Shutterstock.com

" From SARS to Ebola to COVID-19, the risk of
disease transmission from wildlife to people
is a persistent threat to global public health. "


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Meat+Poultry - February 2021

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Meat+Poultry - February 2021

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