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Monday, February 9, 2015

The Businessman who Ate Tiger Penises and Drank Tiger Blood as Wine

Here’s a wildlife conservationist’s worst nightmare: a businessman who eats tiger penises as an aphrodisiac and makes wine out of tiger blood perhaps in a bid to add years to his life. Fortunately, the long arm of the law has caught up with this notorious Chinese and has placed him behind bars, 13  years to be exact.

Still his deeds would haunt many nature lover for years to come. It is reported he slaughtered three animals and the worst part is he killed one by electric shock. Topping all that, he handed out tiger steaks to close friends, China’s state news agency reported.

Cruelty to Animals
A Chinese businessman has been sentenced 13 years behind bars for the act of buying and subsequently eating endangered tigers, making home-brew wine out of their blood.

Identified as a wealthy businessman named Xu, the man reportedly traveled to the southern province of Guangdong last year with the sold purpose of buying tigers. He took the animals to his abode in the region of Guangxi, according to the Xinhua state news agency.

Xu and his colleagues oversaw the killing of three tigers, each slaughtered in separate deals, with one receiving the death by electrocution, the report detailed.

Eating the Prohibited
After having the animals slaughtered, Xu reportedly ate the tigers’ penises and perhaps as bragging rights gave pieces of the meat to his friends with a warning saying: “If anyone asks, say it is beef, horse or big cat meat”.

Xu’s arrest was brought about when one of his deals was put on record by a concerned citizen who made the right choice and reported it to the authorities.

Where the tigers came was not mentioned in the report, only that they may have been smuggled into the vast country.

A Bad History of Aphrodisiacs

Although banned in China, many Chinese believe that the tiger penis is an aphrodisiac. It is said to exhibit important therapeutic properties. However, no direct scientific proofs have been propelled forward to prove the validity of this claim.

What is certain though is the largely unproven notion of tiger penis as aphrodisiacs has only served to endanger the status of the tiger as many enterprising businessman cater to the growing demand over the years. And though many Asian countries, mainly in China and Southeast Asia, most Westerners view the act of killing a tiger to enhance one’s virility largely condemnable – if not bordering in the utter disgusting.

Many parts of Southeast Asia assume the belief that the penis of the tiger can even cure erectile dysfunction. It is for this very reason that it has been sold in China on the black market.

Thanks to Viagra and the advances of modern medicine, less and less people rely on the male tiger’s assets to get their desired result. A study conducted by the leading scholars at the University of South Wales and the University of Alaska found out that Chinese men are also modernizing and look at scientifically-studied cures to their erectile dysfunction. Although many are still clinging unto traditional methods to treat their ailments (e.g., arthritis, indigestion, gout), many are turning their eye towards Western medicine.

Prized Possession

Because of the myth handed down through the generations, many enterprising restaurants all over Asia, including those in China, have reportedly served tiger penis, deer penis, turtle penis or bull penis as a soup delicacy. People seeking their supposed health prowess, have been known to pay up to $5700 on a rare tiger penis dish, a concoction that has to be ordered months in advance to be provided. Also, in places in Singapore and Taiwan, dried tiger penis could fetch the price of $2500 per serving. And as resourceful as businessmen are, it is reported that in the Mekong River Delta, tiger penis complete with testicles still attached are soaked into a bottle of French cognac or Chinese wine to make it all the more palatable. The buyer then take nightly sips to enhance his sexual prowess.

As for Xu, our Chinese businessman who embodied what conservationist fear the most, he was originally sentenced in April last year but made an appeal. His appeal was rejected by the court early this year, according to Xinhua.

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