This is an excerpt from an article written and published online by The South African on 03 May, 2021

Department of Forestry, Fisheries and the Environment (DFFE) Minister Barbara Creecy took crucial steps towards changing the status quo of the commercial captive lion breeding industry in South Africa.

Creecy announced at a stakeholder’s feedback meeting in Pretoria on Sunday 2 May that South Africa will no longer breed captive lions, keep lions in captivity, or use captive lions or their derivatives commercially.

The minister has instructed her department to put processes in place to halt the sale of captive lion derivatives (including the appropriate disposal of existing lion bone stockpiles and lion bone from euthanised lions); the hunting of captive bred lions; tourist interactions with captive lions (including so-called voluntourism and cub petting).

“The [High-Level] Panel identified that the captive lion breeding industry poses risks to the sustainability of wild lion conservation resulting from the negative impact on ecotourism, which funds lion conservation and conservation more broadly, the negative impact on the authentic wild hunting industry, and the risk that trade in lion parts poses to stimulating poaching and illegal trade,” said Creecy in her announcement yesterday.

The department will be initiating processes to implement these majority recommendations by the High-Level Panel (HLP), established by the minister in October 2019, in order to mitigate these risks and shift away from this abhorrent industry.