First Certified Wildlife Friendly™ Enterprise in India Conserves Tigers & Leopards
New conservation enterprise, Jungle Organics™, supports smallholder women farmers producing high quality spices in harmony with wildlife
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
NEW DELHI, India – OCTOBER 26 2016 The Wildlife Friendly Enterprise Network (WFEN) and Jungle Organics™ headquartered in New Delhi, India are pleased to announce that Turmeric Powder, Ground Red Chili Pepper and Coriander Powder grown adjacent to Jim Corbett National Park – core habitat for tigers, leopards, elephants and other globally vulnerable wildlife – have earned Wildlife Friendly™ certification under the Jungle Organics™ brand. The spices are grown on women-operated organic farms that provide safe passage through an important corridor for wildlife as well as access to fresh water sources. In addition, unlike many other crops which are attractants to wildlife, these aromatic spices are not an attractant and actually tend to reduce human-wildlife conflict leading to better attitudes and greater acceptance among local communities towards wildlife. As a result there are fewer retaliatory killings of big cats which are already in jeopardy globally.
“This project hits the mark on so many counts,” said WFEN Director Julie Stein. “From research around the world we know that empowering rural women is the key to food security, nutrition and poverty reduction. And with apex predators in trouble everywhere we are delighted to welcome not only our first enterprise in India – but our first protecting tigers – a flagship endangered species with only a few thousand remaining in breeding populations in the wild. Jungle Organics™ is truly a leading edge conservation enterprise and was formed from inception around the concept of Wildlife Friendly™ farming. We are thrilled to see this kind of entrepreneurial innovation popping up in different ways around the world and supporting wildlife, women and their families. It is proof-of-concept that coexistence with large carnivores can work to support the triple bottom line of people, planet and profit.”
“Subsistence farmers are coexisting with wildlife across India, making the crops they produce and the role their farms play in allowing wildlife to roam free truly unique. The presence of tigers and leopards on the farms is an indicator of the health of the ecosystem and means that the spices and herbs are grown in pristine environments thriving on water from Himalayan rivers and nutrient rich soils. This results in higher potency spices and herbs with better medicinal properties that can contribute to health and well-being. We are excited to see recognition of the linkage between Wildlife Friendly™ farming and production of superior quality ingredients based on the interest coming from Delhi, Bombay and other cities, to purchase our products” said Jungle Organics™ Founder Kaavya Varma, who is an expert in implementing green economy strategies. “This is particularly critical because if spices that are used on an everyday basis can also contribute to protecting big cats then it is much easier for everyone to participate in saving tigers and leopards and can make conservation more mainstream.”
“With the multiple human-caused threats faced by wildlife, it is significant that Uttarakhand is the first place where the State Government has been forward thinking in supporting this enterprise” Ms. Varma explained, “and the State Organic Commodity Board has shown great leadership in partnering with Jungle Organics™ to enhance the livelihoods of small-holder farmers and create awareness amongst farmers about wildlife. These agricultural practices can have a significant impact on conservation and the incomes of women farmers in remote areas.”
In addition to tigers, other threatened and endangered wildlife using these forests and farms as habitat and corridors include leopards, Asiatic black bears, tigers, Himalayan serow, ghural, pangolins, elephants, peacocks, wild boars, sambar deer, porcupines, monkeys and kakar or barking deer. The farms are unfenced, making them particularly Wildlife Friendly™, and farmers use low tech but highly effective and labor intensive foot patrols throughout the night in separate groups of women or men making noises to reduce crop destruction.
Uttarakhand State contains the highest amount of forest cover in India and is home to 1000 leopards and 340 tigers, 10% and 16%, respectively, of the total populations of both animals in India. Leopards and tigers are threatened everywhere they still exist by poaching, a decrease in their prey base, protected area encroachment, deforestation, and roads. Nearly 70% of the farmers in India are smallholder family operations and many of them live in landscapes that overlap with wildlife making it especially important that Indian models of conservation support these farmers and that best practices which support wilderness and biodiversity conservation are replicated in other States beyond Uttarakhand.
About Jungle OrganicsTM
Jungle OrganicsTM works with 100% organic certified farmers who consciously choose to live by forests and wildlife, for the authenticity of their produce, even at the cost of low-yields on their lands. Using wildlife friendly practices, they ensure minimal human intervention to avoid taking away from the originality of the spices and herbs they grow. Our goal is to offer authentic spices and herbs, by supporting and resurrecting pristine farming practices that emphasize coexistence with wildlife, and thus, reduce wildlife-human conflict and the consequent damage that follows. For more information, email email@example.com or visit www.jungleorganics.in.
About Wildlife Friendly Enterprise Network
WFEN and its Certified Wildlife Friendly®, Predator Friendly®, Certified Gorilla Friendly™, and Jaguar Friendly™ and Sea Turtle Friendly™ certification programs represent grassroots farmers, ranchers, artisans, indigenous communities and conservation heroes from around the world including two World Bank Development Marketplace Award winners, a U.N. Equator Prize winner, leadership in the world’s marketplace for REDD+ Carbon Offsets, a Time Hero for the Planet, and a National Geographic Big Cats Initiative grantee. Certified Wildlife Friendly® products contribute to the conservation of over twelve million hectares of diverse wetlands, forests, and grasslands; protect keystone endangered species in Asia, Africa, Europe, the Americas, including the Snow Leopard, Elephant, Tiger, Cheetah, and Wolf; and benefit over 200,000 people through increased food security, income and employment. For more information visit: www.wildlifefriendly.org
Julie Stein, Executive Director
Wildlife Friendly Enterprise Network
Kaavya Varma, Founder & CEO
DotAsia Becomes First Global Internet Company to Join the Wildlife Friendly® Enterprise Network Supporting Tiger Conservation
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
HONG KONG– 20 JAN 2016 – DotAsia Organisation, who operates the global “.Asia” Top-Level Domain (TLD) as a not-for-profit organization with a mandate to promote internet development and adoption in Asia, and the Wildlife Friendly Enterprise Network (WFEN), a global community dedicated to protecting wildlife in wild places and on private agricultural lands in between, are pleased to announce an exciting new collaboration to raise awareness about the important role of internet companies in the poaching crisis and the trade in illegal wildlife parts online. Using Tigers as the flagship species, this effort will assist companies to take positive, productive, practical and achievable steps to address this crisis which could lead to tragic consequences for highly endangered species like Tigers. This effort will also promote legal and certified Tiger Friendly™ products and services that will empower global companies and their consumers to create change on-the-ground and support Tiger conservation and improved livelihoods for rural communities who often turn to illegal activities like poaching to feed their families in Asia.
“Building on the appointment of Ajitora, our PR character for ‘.Asia’, as a Tx2 Ambassador, we are excited to see Aji already hard at work in pulling together this strategic collaboration with WFEN” said Edmon Chung, CEO of DotAsia. “The Tx2 goal is to #doubletigers in the wild by 2022, and is supported by organizations including GTF, WWF and TRAFFIC. Promoting Tiger Friendly™ products, services and corporate practices broadens the reach of Tx2 in Asia. Internet and IT companies are not usually thought to be directly impacting wildlife environment, but unknowingly, illegal wildlife trade is proliferating online, while poachers abusively mine social media data for criminal activities. The work with WFEN will pioneer Wildlife Friendly® guidelines and principals for Internet related businesses.”
“This groundbreaking new Tiger Friendly™ collaboration with DotAsia Organisation and other internet technology companies is a positive step towards stemming the tide on poaching and the illegal wildlife trade especially in Asia where much of the demand originates. Poaching is considered to be one of the most immediate threats to the survival of many species globally and so we applaud DotAsia for their commitment and leadership in taking a proactive stance on this critical wildlife issue for imperiled species like Tigers with as few as 3200 of the big cats remaining in the wild,” said WFEN Executive Director and co-founder Julie Stein.
WFEN Founding Corporate Network Members share the WFEN vision for a world where people and wildlife not only coexist but thrive and are committed to sourcing and creating beautiful products that are made in a manner that respect the producers, land, and wildlife and tourism that engages tourists as partners in conservation. WFEN membership is open to businesses and non-governmental organizations who are committed to the WFEN mission and who actively contribute to Wildlife Friendly® business practices. This contribution may be through building Wildlife Friendly® supply chains, production, sourcing and selling Certified Wildlife Friendly® products, building increased awareness and demand with consumers, and implementing best practices for biodiversity conservation and business, and addressing the illegal wildlife trade.
About DotAsia Organisation
DotAsia (http://www.dot.asia) is a registered not-for-profit charitable organization (DotAsia Foundation: IRD 91/12820) with a mandate to promote Internet development and adoption in Asia. DotAsia operates the “.Asia” top-level domain (TLD) as part of the core global Internet infrastructure, and is formed as an open consortium of official domain authorities in Asia, including .CN (China), .JP (Japan), .KR (Korea), .IN (India), .NZ (New Zealand), .PH (Philippines), etc., and regional Internet organizations including APNIC, APNG, APIA, APCERT, APRALO and APTLD, etc.
Since the launch of “.Asia”, DotAsia has proactively contributed to the Asia community, supporting many charitable projects, e.g.: One-Laptop-Per-Child Asia Pacific (http://www.olpc.asia), Information Society Innovations Fund (http://www.isif.asia), Asia Pacific Regional Internet Governance Forum (http://www.aprigf.asia), Food Revolution Day initiative with Jamie Oliver (http://www.frd.asia), NetMission.Asia (youth volunteer program &network — http://www.netmission.asia), Go.Asia (http://www.go.asia), and many more.
About Wildlife Friendly Enterprise Network
WFEN and its Certified Wildlife Friendly® and Predator Friendly® certification programs represent grassroots farmers, ranchers, artisans, indigenous communities and conservation heroes from around the world including two World Bank Development Marketplace Award winners, a U.N. Equator Prize winner, leadership in the world’s marketplace for REDD+ Carbon Offsets, a Time Hero for the Planet, and a National Geographic Big Cats Initiative grantee. Certified Wildlife Friendly® products contribute to the conservation of over twelve million hectares of diverse wetlands, forests, and grasslands; protect keystone endangered species in Asia, Africa, and Latin and North America, including the Snow Leopard, Elephant, Cheetah, and Wolf; and benefit over 200,000 people through increased food security, income and employment. For more information visit: www.wildlifefriendly.org
Beatrice Chan: firstname.lastname@example.org
Julie Stein: Julie@wildlifefriendly.org