New report on the illegal consumption and trade of the pre-Caspian saiga population
In 2014 Forrest Hogg carried out research into the the Illegal consumption and trade of the pre-Caspian saiga population, using a novel approach he was able to reveal that the consumption of saiga meat in the rural districts of Kalmykia (Russian Federation) is both common and widespread. He found that people’s views of the different qualities of saiga meat are diverse, reflecting a range of values, tastes and pre-existing cultural norms.
The study explores the social norms underpinning consumption behaviour, and reveals an association between people feeling that eating saiga meat is socially acceptable and them actually consuming it. Forrest’s findings underline the significance of tackling meat consumption for saiga conservation, and stress the need for a greater understanding of the human dimensions surrounding saiga poaching, trade and consumption.
This research was approved by the Republic of Kalmykia and the Ministry for Natural Resources and funded by the People’s Trust for Endangered Species, Disney Wildlife Conservation Fund, and Fauna and Flora International’s Ustyurt Landscape Conservation Initiative – supported by USAID. Special thanks must go to the Centre for Wild Animals for the Republic of Kalmykia and its director, Yuri Arylov, for facilitating the fieldwork
To read the executive summary and full report please download these pdfs: