Wednesday, October 6, 2010

ACRES going strong on all fronts

SINGAPORE, 6 October 2010: The Animal Concerns Research & Education Society (ACRES) had an eventful week - releasing the results of 3 successful sting operations late last week , organising a cruelty-free living exhibition at the main shopping belt here over the weekend, and appearing on a national news programme this morning as well.

Beginning with a press release on 30 September, ACRES described how its undercover officers posed as buyers in Hougang for the sale of a hedgehog (15 September), in Choa Chu Kang for the sale of a whole alleged tiger skin complete with the head and claimed to be from Sri Lanka (21 September), and in Serangoon for the sale of pieces of alleged tiger skins claimed to be from Thailand (22 September). The Agri-Food and Veterinary Authority (AVA) responded immediately when alerted and the items have been seized for further investigation.


The hedgehog was offered for sale by a Chinese man for $150, the whole alleged tiger skin by an Indian man for $400 and the pieces of alleged tiger skins by a Chinese woman for $128 each. “These seizures together with the major seizures of alleged tiger parts in Singapore in March this year have put a huge dent in the illegal wildlife trade,” said Ms. Anbarasi Boopal, Director of ACRES Wildlife Crime Unit.


Moving on to more proactive initiatives, ACRES launched 'SHOP WISE, SAVE LIVES: say no to animal cruelty', the first-ever event in Singapore that promotes cruelty-free living and raises awareness about product testing on animals, factory farming and the cruelty behind some fashion products.


The 3-day event was held over the weekend from 1 to 3 October in the heart of Singapore and featured a mock supermarket display revealing the hidden cruelty behind the production of some toiletries, cosmetics, household products and fashion items while offering the many cruelty-free, animal-friendly alternatives available.


Members of the public had the chance to try out and purchase cruelty-free products at a discount, brought in by leading brands such as The Naturally Better Company, Lemongrass House, Terra Plana and Bud Cosmetics, to kickstart their new cruelty-free lifestyle. A free iPhone application which lists non-animal tested products and Singapore’s first-ever Cruelty-Free Pocket Shopping Guide produced by ACRES were made available as well.


The guide lists cruelty-free brands and the exact locations their products can be purchased in Singapore. These brands have been approved by the BUAV’s Humane Cosmetic Standard or Humane Household Product schemes and often feature a “Leaping Bunny logo” on the products.


Finally, Louis Ng, Executive Director of ACRES, appeared on Primetime Morning, a weekday news programme that airs every morning on Channel NewsAsia. In the five minute segment (watch clip), the hosts of the show interviewed Louis who gave a brief overview of the illegal wildlife trade and reiterated the need for the community at large to work harder to stop this, especially in Singapore.

ACRES continues to live up to its mission of creating "a caring and socially responsible society where animals are treated as sentient beings and where the environment is preserved for future generations”.

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