Consumers can adopt cows and check on their cows on this Chinese app

On March 5, 2019, Shao Yi, founder and CEO of Beijing Mu Niu Xian Sheng Animal Husbandry Technology Co., Ltd., Chang Ruishan, co-founder and executive vice president, and  Cao Yuan, dean of Xian Sheng E-commerce Business School, visited the Animal Welfare International Cooperation Committee (ICCAW) office in China, and were warmly welcomed by the president A Yongxi and team members.

From the left: Cao Yuan, A Yongxi, Shao Yi, Chang Ruishan. @ICCAW

Shao Yi, the founder and CEO, introduced their company: Mu Niu Xian Sheng, meaning Cowherd Fresh, is a platform business that integrates the internet and intelligent information sharing into the beef cattle industry. Through the e-commerce app platform, consumers can pay to “adopt” cattle on the pasture. At the same time, consumers have access to the information collected by the sensors on the cattle, through which they can read their cows’ health status and amount of exercise. In this way, consumers are closely connected to the pasture, and adopters become the owners of the cattle.

The adoption page for cattle on the Mu Niu Xian Sheng App.
Translation: Cattle rearing period in months; predicted profit in %; price of each cow in ¥RMB (roughly $1,900 or $2,300 in USD)

Through the tracking system of the platform, consumers can clearly understand the production process of cattle beef, from breeding, slaughtering, to food processing, which enhances their confidence in food safety. Consumers can buy safe and high-quality beef products through the online store of Mu Niu Xian Sheng, which not only helps to promote the ranches but also breaks the conventional ways of purchasing beef products such as going to supermarkets or brand-specific stores.

The online store of the Mu Niu Xian Sheng app

The president of ICCAW says that the combination of e-commerce and beef cattle industry can solve the traditional disadvantages such as high input cost, long payback period, and difficulty in sales. Due to various uncertainties in beef cattle husbandry, many small and medium-sized ranches lack the ability to take risks, which results in unguaranteed income. Meanwhile, Mu Niu Xian Sheng has also started strategic cooperation with the insurance company, Ping An China, and insured every cow on the platform, greatly improving the cattle ranchers’ resilience to risks.

The Animal Welfare International Cooperation Committee (ICCAW)

In the end, the president of ICCAW approved of the model of combining the internet and beef cattle industry, and he is willing to help more beef cattle enterprises through applying the successful examples set by Mu Niu Xian Sheng.

All information comes from

Translated by Dule

Edited by Andrea Jia and Riley Peng @ Animal Dialogue

The welfare of donkeys in China is highly recognized by international animal welfare experts

How to maintain the balance between animal welfare and productivity and maximize animal welfare in the commercial farming process is an important topic for international animal welfare organizations. To this end, experts from the World Farm Animal Welfare Association, the Donkey Sanctuary, and the China Agricultural International Cooperation Promotion Association went to Dong’e Ejiao in August 2018 to conduct site visits to investigate the farmed donkeys’ welfare and discuss how to improve welfare and create more comfortable “homes” for donkeys. Dong’e Ejiao is a company that produces a type of condensed gelatin called “Ejiao” from donkey skin. In traditional Chinese medicine, Ejiao is used to improve the immune system and treat anemia.

Dr. Karen Rickards, an expert of welfare standard assessments at the British Welfare Association, spoke highly of Dong’e Ejiao’s efforts in improving donkey welfare. “The welfare of Dong’e Ejiao is very good in general and it is even better than those in the UK in some aspects such as providing sand pits for the donkeys.”

Dong’e Ejiao Welfare is also highly recognized by Stephen DeRoz, a professor of Small Animal and Horse Breeding in the Department of Clinical Veterinary Medicine, University of Liège, Belgium.

As early as August 2017, at the First International Donkey Industry Development Academic Exchange Meeting, more than 400 experts from 16 countries gathered in Dong’e Ejiao to discuss the frontier topics in the development of the donkey industry and animal welfare.

Dong’e Ejiao advocates the rational use of animal products while protecting animals based on the principle of “common but differentiated.” It believes that the trade of animal products has its rationality and legitimacy, but at the same time, people should severely crack down on the illegal slaughter of smuggled animals and their biological products.

Not only the welfare of the donkeys has drawn a lot of attention, but the welfare of other animals has also received extensive attention and emphasis in China with remarkable results. At present, the world’s largest and most widely participated animal welfare conference, the 2nd World Farm Animal Welfare Conference, was successfully held in Beijing on October 24, 2018.

Modern food production conflicts with animal welfare. If there is no human interference, animals are in a natural state of welfare. If humans managed the animals properly, such as providing sufficient food and water, keeping them out of the attack of hunters, rendering medical care, and paying attention to their health conditions, then their productivity will increase and the animal welfare would be maximized. We need to reach a balance between animal welfare and productivity in the natural state to maximize animal welfare in commercial farming.

All information comes from

Translated by Jiaxuan Han

Edited by Andrea Jia and Riley Peng @ Animal Dialogue

Chinese chicken manufacturer recognized for their commitment to chicken welfare

In June 2018, the Jiangsu Lihua Animal Husbandry Co. received the Five-Star Good Chicken Production Award from Compassion in World Farming (CIWF) for their commitment to chicken welfare. Since 2014, CWIF had partnered with the International Cooperation Committee of Animal Welfare (ICCAW) to award Chinese farms according to criteria that equated to stars, and five stars represented the highest achievement in farm welfare. The company became the only manufacturer in Jiangsu Province to receive the award for their high standards. 

The leading brand of chicken meat from the company is called Xueshan (Snow Mountain) Chicken, which is a new type of grass chicken that has been carefully bred by scientists using the high-quality Tibetan chicken and Yunnan Camellia chicken as the primary parent stock. 

Dr. Yuan Qingyan from the company’s technical department explained, “Xueshan Chicken has been selected and bred through many generations. This type of chicken is characterized by their wild nature.” Catering to the chicken’s nature, the housing of the Xueshan Chicken has a natural litter of rice husk as bedding, and is designed to be semi-open with perches. Dr. Yuan has been working in the company for 11 years since she joined Lihua in 2007.

“Chickens naturally enjoy jumping around and resting on perches. Our special perch has earned the Utility Model Patent,” said Dr. Yuan. “Besides, we built large fields with a sand bath area. Chickens can grow in a large area, and they have more opportunity to run around freely and exercise, which improves the meat quality. These chickens are adept at running and flying, and some can even hop up into a tree.”

Dr. Yuan also addressed, “The chicken house environment is controlled to provide a comfortable place for chickens. The daily temperature variation in the chicken house is reduced in the winter. In the summer, the house can be kept very cool.”

The technical regulations for raising Xueshan Chicken in Lihua have been regarded as local farming standards by the Jiangsu government. “The chickens in this system are rarely sick. Accordingly, the amount of medicine used is also reduced, and the food safety is greatly improved.” Dr. Yuan said.

All information comes from

Translated by Dule

Edited by Andrea Jia and Riley Peng @ Animal Dialogue

Plant-based meats become an investment hotspot — Sophie’s Kitchen perfects its manufacture process to sell plant-based seafood to European and American markets

With the continuous growth of the global population, it has become increasingly difficult to produce enough meat to satisfy global demands. Moreover, animal agriculture and meat processing also damage the environment.

Therefore, 100 % plant-based meats that look and taste exactly like real meat has begun to emerge.

How big is the market for plant-based meats? It is reported that 4% of the world’s population are vegetarians, and this number is on the rise. According to the Vegetarian Association, the U.S. plant-based meat market in 2016 was worth $5 billion and contributed $13.7 billion in sales to the U.S. economy. This is only the U.S. data. The plant-based meat industries in the UK, France, Germany, and other countries are also developing rapidly.

We learned that the research and development of plant-based protein products and their producers, including Beyond Meat and Impossible Foods, have received tremendous financial support, and the number of new companies is also increasing. But these companies place more focus on replacing normal meat products.

Sophie’s Kitchen, which has recently drawn attention from 36Kr, expressed interest in another vertical market for plant-based meats — plant-based seafood, which uses vegan raw materials to mimic the taste, smell, and nutrition of seafood.

Yaoxin Wang, the founder of Sophie’s Kitchen, told the reporter from 36Kr that he chose to enter the seafood market because many people from all over the world are allergic to seafood, and the demand is relatively strong.

According to an epidemiological survey, the number of people allergic to seafood products in the United States has reached 6.9 million, accounting for 2.3% of its total population. The epidemiological survey of the Chinese Center for Disease Control and Prevention found that the incident rate of food allergies in Chinese adults is as high as 6%. The survey identified the major allergens as seafood products and eggs. In addition, the seafood meat structure is more difficult to imitate and has certain technical thresholds.

Sophie’s Kitchen focuses on the imitation of seafood meat structure. This technology is relatively mature. The raw material it uses to substitute fish meat is pea protein powder, and the raw material for substituting soft shell seafood is konjac and seaweed powder. Wang told 36 Kr that they applied for a number of patents for the processing technology. The production process of soft shell seafood substitutes completely differs from the production process of fish substitutes. After completing the imitation of the fleshy structure, Sophie’s Kitchen will optimize taste and nutrients in the next step.

Sophie’s Kitchen’s products are processed in a factory in Taiwan, with a capacity of about 10 tons per month, mainly producing seafood and plant-based meat products. Its products have successfully entered more than 1,000 European and American supermarkets through vendors, with an annual revenue of about 1 million USD.


Wang told 36 Kr that although their products generate high profits, Sophie’s Kitchen is still limited by the scale of its business and is looking for U.S. investments to finance its expansion. He hopes to increase its number of product carriers to 2,000 and generate a profit of 2 million USD in 2018.

Unlike other plant-based seafood producers who target the restaurant industry, Sophie’s Kitchen mainly sells products through supermarkets.

The Sophie’s Kitchen team currently consists of four people. Its CEO Yaoxin Wang has an MBA from the Columbia Business School, as well as over 20 years of experience in plant-based manufacturing.

All information and photos come from Jiuchisu:

Translated by Jiajia Han and Sherry Yao, and edited by Riley Peng @ Animal Dialogue

The establishment of China’s first farm animal welfare charity award

On the morning of June 20th, the launching ceremony of the “Farm Animal Welfare Promotion Award” was held at the Chinese Academy of Agricultural Sciences. This award is the first public welfare award for farm animal welfare in China, jointly sponsored by the World Animal Protection Association (World Animal Protection), the China Veterinary Association (CVMA), and the China Agricultural International Cooperation Promotion Association (CAPIAC).

The ceremony was hosted by Zili Jia, Secretary General of the Animal Welfare Health Services and Welfare Branch of the China Veterinary Association.


In a subsequent speech, Jinluo Wang, Executive Deputy Secretary General of the Chinese Veterinary Association, introduced that World Animal Protection was established in 1981, and has dedicated itself to animal protection for over 30 years. Headquartered in London, it is active in more than 50 countries around the world. The organization actively promotes the concept and practice of animal protection. Internationally, holding a comprehensive consultative status with the United Nations ensures that animal protection is included in the global issues that need to be addressed, explaining to the world that animal protection is mutually beneficially for both humans and nonhuman animals.

Jinluo Wang speaking at the launching ceremony

China is a big producer of animal products. In order to promote the enactment of animal welfare legislation, the China Animal Welfare Association was established in 2013. It has demonstrated its commitment to the advancement of animal welfare by executing various animal welfare projects.

Mr. Zhonghua Zhao, China’s Chief Representative of the World Animal Protection Association, remarked that just like humans, animals also have morality and emotions. China’s cultural inheritance should also include animal protection.

Moreover, animal welfare standards must be adopted by the livestock industry in the near future. The “Farm Animal Welfare Promotion Award” aims to promote the implementation of animal welfare standards in slaughterhouses and other enterprises.

Chunling Xi, Executive Director of the China Council for the Promotion of International Cooperation of Animal Welfare (ICCAW), explained that prior to this ceremony, the ICCAW conducted a questionnaire among the masses. The survey results show that welfare animal farming in China has a high degree of public recognition: 84% of those surveyed are willing to purchase welfare-rated products, and 70% are willing to purchase welfare-rated products at a price 10% higher than non-welfare-rated products.

Therefore, she hopes that these animal welfare prizes will make the public more acceptive of animal welfare.

Chunling Xi speaking at the ceremony

Professor Xianhong Gu, an animal welfare expert for 20 years, reported to the guests and media outlets present at the ceremony the significant progress China has made in farm animal welfare. At present, China’s farm animal welfare standards have been promulgated, in conjunction with the launch of relevant national scientific research plans.

All information and photos come from

Translated by Sherry Yao and edited by Riley Peng @ Animal Dialogue

Chuying Agro-Pastoral Group awarded with the “Good Pig Production Award”

On June 28th, Chuying Agro-Pastoral Group has been honored with the “Good Pig Production Award.” This is the third time for the Group to win this award signifying international recognition.

Compassion in World Animal Farming, or CIWF, has awarded the Group because of its commitment to “green” and humane farming methods for meat pigs and sows.1

The Group really cares about the health and well-being of its pigs, taking measures to ensure their comfort.

For instance, experts have prepared a customized daily schedule for each pig. In the summer, the pigs would go outside to sunbathe. In the summer, the pigs would go indoors to stay warm. Whenever they are thirsty, they can drink premium spring water. Whenever they feel hungry, they can eat high-quality soy and corn, and snack on fresh, seasonal vegetables.

In 2014, China Association for the Promotion of International Agricultural Cooperation, or CAPIAC, collaborated with CIWF to introduce the “Good Pig” award into China. Chuying Agro-Pastoral Group was the first enterprise to be honored with the award.

Subsequently, under the guidance of CIWF, the Group has continued to improve the welfare standards for its pigs. The Group ensures that during the transportation process, its pigs would not suffer from the bumpiness of roads. Before being slaughtered, they listen to Buddhist scriptures to stay emotionally calm. They are also euthanized instead of inhumanely slaughtered.2

“Now, many farmers proactively promote welfare pig farming,” said Wuqun Hou, Vice Chairman of Chuying Agro-Pastoral Group. The concept of welfare animal farming has now become much more widely recognized in Chinese farms.

All information and photos were obtained from

Learn more about the Good Pig Award here:

Summarized and edited by Riley Peng @ Animal Dialogue

China’s first “vegetarian hospital” has launched forth China’s health care reform!

On April 10th, 2018, Changsha Integrated Hospital of Chinese and Western Medicine officially became China’s first “vegetarian hospital.” The Chinese medical revolution has begun!

Through spreading the concept of “one vegetarian meal per week,” the hospital provides medical personnel with a free vegetarian meal. At the same time, the hospital promotes healthy eating to its medical workers and patients with chronic diseases such as cardiovascular and cerebrovascular diseases and diabetes. In doing so, the hospital aims to help them return to a traditional, plant-based diet and healthy lifestyle.WechatIMG26

In December 2013, Dr. Changjiang Xiao, the promoter of the Vegetarian Hospital, visited Tzu Chi General Hospital in Hualien, Taiwan. This hospital was ranked first in Asia’s overall service capacity last year, and it actually offered exclusively vegetarian meals for its inpatients. Because Dr. Changjiang Xiao has been promoting vegetarianism in hospitals, there has arisen a desire to promote vegetarianism in mainland hospitals. In the past two decades, the number of incidences of various chronic diseases in China has been continuously rising, and the age of the onset of these diseases has become increasingly younger, which is closely related to medical professionals’ backward beliefs about nutrition.WechatIMG27

The medical education received by most medical personnel lacks a systematic overview of nutrition. Thus, most medical staff always believe that only animal products—such as fish, meat, eggs, and milk—can be nutritious. They disagree with the idea that a vegetarian diet is more nutritious. Therefore, medical professionals are the biggest opponents of vegetarianism.WechatIMG29

Dr. Xiao’s medical staff were the only ones to abandon their backward dietary concepts after filling the gaps in their nutritional education. As a result, they were able to help their patients reshape their health more effectively. Promoting “vegetarian wards” can awaken sleeping doctors and nurses to pay attention to nutrition and recognize that a vegetarian diet is more salutary for patients’ health. Advocating for a healthy and vegetarian diet and lifestyle can fundamentally achieve disease prevention by targeting the root causes of chronic diseases.

“Vegetarian wards” and “vegetarian hospitals” are within the “experiential health education” model promoted by Dr. Changjiang Xiao. So far, thousands of patients, family members, and medical personnel have tried out vegetarianism. After tasting delicious vegetarian foods, everyone approved of the tastefulness and healthfulness of a vegetarian diet. Patients, family members, and medical personnel often donated vegetarian food. Many patients told Dr. Changjiang Xiao before leaving the hospital that they must eat less meat and more vegetarian meals in the future! Dr. Xiao hopes that medical personnel from all over China can participate in the promotion of a healthy vegetarian diet.

Info and photos obtained from VegPlanet’s WeChat platform:

The original article was written by Birdy from VegPlanet.

Translated by Sherry Yao, edited by Riley Peng

Can VR increase people’s awareness of animal protection?

A while ago, the death of the last male white rhinoceros “Sudan” shook Internet users. Sudan’s death also means that white rhinoceros— the beautiful species— has entered the countdown to extinction.

With the increase of human activities since the 20th century, animals’ living space has been continuously compressed, pushing many species onto the verge of extinction. Globally, more and more national organizations and private organizations have tried their best to utilize various cutting-edge technologies, including virtual reality, to enhance people’s awareness of animal protection.

The Virtual Reality charity movie “Panda Love: The Secret Lives of Pandas” will be released soon. The film was jointly created by Conservation International, Chengdu Giant Panda Breeding Research Base, and the famous photographer Ami Vitale. The famous actor Wei Tang served as the Chinese commentator.Giant Pandas

The film is another public welfare documentary released by Conservation International after the traditional public welfare documentary “Below the Canopy.” It aims to make the audience vividly experience the living conditions of giant pandas through the strong sense of immersion brought about by VR videos. At the same time, it also demonstrates China’s achievements in giant panda protection.

As VR is a relatively novel approach, animal protection organizations and directors are still exploring the methods and techniques of VR documentary filming. Can VR improve the shortcomings of traditional documentaries? What are the problems still faced by VR documentaries? In some of the more representative cases in the past, we can already see some of the answers.

Compared with traditional documentaries, VR documentaries can break through the limitations of the picture frame, allowing the audience to be closer to nature, creating a feeling of intimate contact with animals.

When viewing a traditional documentary, viewers and the world depicted in the film are completely separated by a screen. Thus, they are merely viewing the world depicted in the film as outsiders. When watching VR documentaries, on the other hand, viewers are isolated from the outside world. Fully immersed in the environment inside the documentary, they now perceive the film world as insiders.

For example, when we see the scene of animal slaughter in a traditional video, although the audience generally feels some discomfort, they are still experiencing the event from a third-person perspective. In contrast, in the VR documentary “I, Chicken” produced by PETA, the viewer see the entire slaughter process from a first-person perspective and experience the event just as a chicken would.chicken2.jpg
At the beginning of the documentary, the viewer (a chicken) leisurely roam on pasture. Soon, however, the viewer is unfortunately selected and trapped inside a small cage to be sent to a slaughterhouse.

When the cage is placed on the conveyor belt to the slaughter machine, viewers will feel the rapid heartbeats of and fear experienced by the chicken.

This is the significance of VR technology for filming animal protection-related documentaries — viewers are immersed in the animal’s living environment, and witness animal cruelty from an animal’s perspective. This is what VR’s strong sense of immersion brings to the audience. Sam Simon, the producer of the documentary and of The Simpsons, said in an interview that he hopes to awaken humankind’s empathy for animals through VR.Chicken 3.jpg

Despite these advantages, VR faces many challenges. To begin with, the production and promotion costs of VR documentaries are very high, for the production equipment is expensive, and very few technicians specialize in VR technology. Some VR films cost as high as millions of dollars to produce. Additionally, VR gives viewers too much room for interpretation, which makes it hard for the directors to effectively deliver their message.

All in all, nonetheless, animal protection-focused VR documentaries provide the audience a more realistic experience and can effectively promote animal protection. We look forward to seeing more people being moved and impacted by VR documentaries to pay more attention to animal protection.

Information and photos from

Translated by Sherry Yao, edited by Riley @ Animal Dialogue