Wednesday, October 12, 2005

37. Endangered species may get a boost from Viagra - (headline in Anchorage Daily News)

.....Asian men who traditionally tried to treat their impotence with sliced reindeer antlers as well as bits of exotic and threatened animals may be switching to Viagra, according to a study. The report found that a group of Hong Kong men gave up traditional Chinese remedies like seal penises, sea horses and green turtle eggs as a cure for erectile dysfunction in favor of more dramatic and verifiable results produced by the little blue pills.
......A possible Alaska consequence is the recent plunge in the price of reindeer antlers, a legal animal product once in high demand as one traditional treatment for male sexual problems. The value of Alaska reindeer byproducts, including antlers, dropped from about $692,000 in 1997 to $195,000 in 1998, the year Viagra was introduced. Prices have been half of the $40 to $45 per pound that antlers used to bring.
......Viagra won't have an impact on a different Alaska trade -- the illegal trafficking in bear gall bladders. Bear parts are thought to increase sexual vigor by some Asian men but aren't considered a traditional remedy specifically for erectile dysfunction.
.....But most of the men continued to prefer traditional Chinese cures for arthritis, indigestion and gout -- and used western medicine at a much lower rate. That makes sense, because many Chinese men remain deeply suspicious of western medicine and wouldn't make the cross-cultural switch unless they had a very good reason. And that would be penile dysfunction.
.............(exerpts from the paper)

Nothing will discourage bear farming in China more than a story like this:
Planotx - I think part of the URL is missing.
I see that port of the URL is missing, hidden beneath the right-hand column,

Here it is again...

You'll have to do a double copy/paste to splice the two lines together without a seam.
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