Wildlife Friendly Enterprise Network
Wild Elephants in Assam India  Photo:  Anshuma Basumatary

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University of Montana & WFEN Launch First Certified Elephant Friendly™ Tea at World Tea Expo June 12-15 2017

Elephant Friendly™ Tea helps secure a future for wild elephants

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Wild Elephants in Assam India Photo: Anshuma Basumatary

Wild Elephants in Assam India Photo: Anshuma Basumatary

Las Vegas, Nevada: – June 12, 2017– The Wildlife Friendly Enterprise Network (WFEN) and the University of Montana (UM) Broader Impacts Group are pleased to announce the launch of the world’s first Elephant FriendlyTM Tea Certification at this year’s World Tea Expo, where the Elephant FriendlyTM Tea team will showcase tea from plantations that are certified as Elephant FriendlyTM, supporting the survival of the endangered Asian elephant.

WFEN, a global community dedicated to the development of products and tourism that contribute to the conservation of threatened wildlife and to the economic vitality of rural landscapes, is partnering with the University of Montana, home to the top-ranked Wildlife Biology program in North America, to engage tea growers, sellers and consumers in a ground-breaking farm-to-cup approach to support the conservation of endangered Asian elephants, Elephas maximus.

Since the early 1800’s tea consumption has been on the rise, and today it is the most popular beverage worldwide. Tea plantations have replaced much of the natural habitat of Asian elephants and other species. Habitat loss and the associated human-elephant conflict, which often leads to loss of life for both people and elephants, have contributed significantly to the decline of Asian elephant populations. According to the IUCN Red List, Asian elephants are an endangered species, with an estimated 40,000-50,000 remaining across their range countries, a decline of over 50% in the last 75 years. India holds at least 50% of the remaining population and is the world’s second largest tea producer, with tea lands primarily located in areas historically inhabited by elephants.

Engaging tea growers as active partners in elephant conservation is critical to the future of Asian elephants in the wild. Agricultural lands planted for tea production can play a vital role as corridors of movement between natural areas. Tea plantations often serve as nurseries where mothers give birth and rest for a few days until their newborn babies are strong enough to move with the herd.

However, agricultural practices on tea estates can present potential hazards for elephants, such as the use of deep and narrow drainage ditches which can trap infant and juvenile elephants. Improperly installed electric fencing or sagging electricity lines can pose electrocution risks for elephants. Chemicals used in conventional tea production, if not stored securely or applied judiciously, can poison elephants. In addition, human-elephant conflict can have grave consequences for both elephants and tea worker communities.

An innovative market-based solution comes in the form of a new Elephant FriendlyTM Certification program providing Lake Missoula Elephant Friendly Teaan opportunity for tea growers to make changes that reduce their negative impacts on elephant populations and enables companies to tell a story of coexistence to consumers. In the spring of 2017, the first Elephant FriendlyTM Tea plantation was certified in Assam, India. This organic farm serves as a model to other growers who are interested in becoming certified under this program. Lake Missoula Tea Company in Montana, USA, is the first business to carry Elephant FriendlyTM Tea for sale. The first restaurant to carry the certified tea, Caffe Dolce in Missoula, Montana, has also joined the growing community of vendors who are committing to sourcing Elephant FriendlyTM Tea.

Lisa Mills, who serves as the liaison for the University of Montana on this project, explains: “We are encouraged by the interest we are seeing from tea growers and tea buyers who want to join the Certified Elephant FriendlyTM Tea program. With a percentage of every sale going back to support elephant conservation in the communities where the tea is grown, tea drinkers can enjoy great tea while supporting human-elephant coexistence.”

“To be certified under this program tea growers must meet strict “elephant friendly” standards which have been vetted by experts on elephants in this part of the world, “ said Julie Stein, Executive Director and Co-founder of WFEN. “We are excited to see that the tea is commanding a strong price premium in the marketplace, which is early proof-of-concept that consumers will support the conservation mission. “

By buying Elephant FriendlyTM Tea consumers are helping sustain wild elephant populations and secure their future. Interested companies and consumers can learn more at http://elephantfriendlytea.com/or on Facebook at: https://www.facebook.com/elephantfriendlytea

About the Wildlife Friendly Enterprise Network

WFEN and its certification programs represent grassroots farmers, ranchers, artisans, indigenous peoples 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, and Latin and North America – including the snow leopard, tiger, elephant, cheetah, red panda, and wolf – and benefit over 200,000 people through increased food security, income and employment. For more information visit: www.wildlifefriendly.org

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About the University of Montana

The University of Montana (UM), located in Missoula, Montana, USA, is a higher education institution, home to the top-ranked Wildlife Biology Program in North America and award-winning research, outreach and business innovation programs. The Elephant FriendlyTM Program is a partnership between the University of Montana’s Broader Impacts Group at http://www.umt.edu/big/, the Wildlife Friendly Enterprise Network, and business and conservation science advisors from across the globe. The UM Blackstone Launchpad and UM School of Business provide additional planning and marketing support.

Contact  

Wildlife Friendly

Julie Stein: Julie@wildlifefriendly.org

University of Montana

Lisa Mills: lisa.mills@mso.umt.edu

 

 

 

Certified Wildlife Friendly - Lion Tailed Macaque_Color_Lion Tail Macaque
Wild Kaapi
empowers coffee drinkers to do good with every cup of Certified Wildlife Friendly™ coffee

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

WESTERN GHATS, INDIA: JUNE 1 2017—The Wildlife Friendly Enterprise Network (WFEN), a global community dedicated to the development of products and tourism that contribute to the conservation of threatened wildlife and to the economic vitality of rural landscapes, is pleased to announce the awarding of Wildlife Friendly™ Certification to Wild Kaapi™ coffee company.

Tiger in the Western Ghats. Photo: Ramki Sreenivasan

Tiger in the Western Ghats. Photo: Ramki Sreenivasan

Wild Kaapi™ emerged out of a scientific effort to measure on-farm biodiversity, market dynamics and the management actions of more than 1100 farmers in India’s Western Ghats. The Western Ghats of India are a global biodiversity hotspot home to the largest population of wild tigers, elephants and endemic amphibians and birds not found anywhere on the planet. The coffee landscapes of Karnataka present ideal conditions for promoting wildlife-friendly practices in coffee production.

Wild Kaapi’s coffee is sourced from coffee farms that are now certified Wildlife Friendly™ through rigorous scientific audits for birds, butterflies, mammals, amphibians and trees. The vision for the company is to build sustainable livelihoods and create a network of coffee growers who foster thriving populations of wildlife on their lands while delivering the highest quality of freshly roasted coffee to consumers.

WildKaapiCoffeeAvinash Sosale co-founder of Wild Kaapi™ explains “Our company has established new standards for supporting wildlife on coffee farms in the Ghats through a certification program which incorporates local expertise and knowledge optimizing the ecological, social and economic value of coffee production landscapes. We believe innovation and partnerships based on rigorous science will forge new paths for conservation.”

At launch Wild Kaapi™offers single origin coffees from Wildlife Friendly™ farms in the Chikmagalur District in Karnataka, the birthplace of coffee in India. The freshly roasted coffee is sold online at www.wildkaapi.com and can be custom ground to the coffee connoisseur brewing preferences be it an Aeropress, Chemex or Moka Pot.

“Agricultural lands are increasingly important as critical refuges and corridors for wildlife globally who are facing multiple threats from climate change to habitat conversion” said Julie Stein, Executive Director and co-founder of WFEN. “We are thrilled to welcome Wild Kaapi™ as the first Wildlife Friendly™ coffee company in the world.  Wild Kaapi™ sets a high standard for ensuring biodiversity on coffee farms in India’s Western Ghats truly ensuring that we as consumers are empowered to support wildlife conservation and sustainable agricultural with every cup of coffee – a true triple bottom line win.”

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About Wildlife Friendly Enterprise Network

WFEN and its certification programs represent grassroots farmers, ranchers, artisans, indigenous peoples 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, and Latin and North America, including the Snow Leopard, Tiger, Elephant, Cheetah, Red Panda, and Wolf; and benefit over 200,000 people through increased food security, income and employment.  For more information visit: www.wildlifefriendly.org

 

Wild Kaapi

Visit: www.wildkaapi.com

http://www.facebook.com/wildkaapi

http://www.instagram.com/wildkaapi

http://www.twitter.com/wildkaapi

 

Contact:
Wild Kaapi, Avinash Sosale: Avinash@wildkaapi.com

Wildlife Friendly, Julie Stein: Julie@wildlifefriendly.org

 

Queen of Raw logo

Certified Wildlife Friendly® materials now featured to pro-wildlife fashion designers

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

NEW YORK CITY, NY: – 19 APRIL 2017 – Wildlife Friendly Enterprise Network (WFEN), a

global community dedicated to developing products that protect wildlife and bring economic vitality to rural landscapes, is pleased to announce an exciting new partnership with Queen of Raw, an online platform that sells innovative and sustainable raw materials to designers around the world.

Each Wildlife Friendly® fiber or material sourced from Queen of Raw is supporting coexistence efforts in some of the most spectacular landscapes left on earth and is improving the livelihoods of people who hold the fate of the world’s most endangered

wildlife in their hands. WFEN products include Lemur-friendly silk and raffia from Madagascar, merino wool from ranchers coexisting with Guanacos and other wildlife on Peninsula Valdes in Patagonia, Argentina, felt and yarn supporting the survival of Snow Leopards in Mongolia, beadwork as an alternative livelihood to illegal poaching in Kenya, and Italian cashmere produced in harmony with Wolves.

By purchasing Wildlife Friendly® products through Queen of Raw, designers and their consumers will be empowered to create change on the ground for people and wildlife. This unique partnership will make Queen of Raw a Founding WFEN Corporate Network Member along with other leading edge companies in the global fashion industry, including Kering and Stella McCartney.

“We’re fielding keen interest in Wildlife Friendly® Certified fibers and raw materials from the sustai

Beadwork as an alternative livelihood to illegal poaching in Kenya. (Photo courtesy of Joanna Brown)

Beadwork as an alternative livelihood to illegal poaching in Kenya. (Photo courtesy of Joanna Brown)

nable fashion world” said Julie Stein, Executive Director and Co-Founder of WFEN, “and this new partnership with Queen of Raw will showcase our network’s conse

rvation heroes, artisans, and farmers, many of whom are women, to designers seeking sustainable sourcing options in New York City and beyond. We couldn’t be more excited to be working with Stephanie and her team.”

“Queen of Raw was founded to fill the gap between supply and demand in the raw materials supply chain” said Stephanie Benedetto, CEO and Co-Founder of Queen of Raw, “and working with Julie and a powerful organization like WFEN will allow us to accomplish our goals while contributing to a sustainable, waste-eliminating fashion environment. Together we can change the world!”

 

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About Wildlife Friendly Enterprise Network

WFEN and its certification programs represent grassroots farmers, ranchers, artisans, indigenous peoples, and conservation heroes from around the world. This includes 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. They also protect keystone endangered species in Asia, Africa, Europe, and Latin and North America – including the snow leopard, tiger, elephant, cheetah, red panda, and wolf – and benefit over 200,000 people through increased food security, income, and employment. For more information visit: www.wildlifefriendly.org

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About Queen of Raw

Queen of Raw is the online destination for designers to source cutting-edge raw materials directly from suppliers. Its global suppliers have been selected for their innovative raw materials, values around sustainability, and avant-garde approach to fashion and technology. Queen of Raw was recently named a NASA/NIKE/IKEA/U.S. Dept. of State LAUNCH.org Innovator. With family roots in the fashion and textiles business for over 100 years, its CEO serves on the Board of Advisors of the New York City Fair Trade Coalition and as co-host on Material Is Your Business podcast. For more information visit: www.queenofraw.com

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Contact

Queen of Raw

Stephanie Benedetto: stephanie@queenofraw.com

Wildlife Friendly

Julie Stein: Julie@wildlifefriendly.org

 

 

 

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The future Patagonia National Park, Chile, is now Certified Wildlife Friendly™ showcasing flagship coexistence efforts, wildlife conservation and wild lands protection for tourists while supporting the local economy 

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

 AYSÉN REGION, CHILE: – APRIL-2017– The Wildlife Friendly Enterprise Network (WFEN), a global community dedicated to the development and promotion of products and tourism that contribute to the conservation of threatened wildlife and to the economic vitality of rural landscapes, is pleased to announce the awarding of Wildlife Friendly™ Certification to Patagonia Park, part of Conservacion Patagonica whose mission is to promote the creation of national parks in Patagonia (Argentina and Chile), in collaboration with neighboring communities and local, regional, and national governments, that save and restore wildlands and wildlife, inspire care for the natural world, and generate healthy economic opportunities for local communities.

Originally one of the region’s largest sheep ranches, Estancia Valle Chacabuco changed ownership several times over the past century, resulting in an overgrazed and degraded landscape. When Kris and Doug Tompkins first visited the Valle Chacabuco Valley in 1995, CONAF (Chile’s National Forest Service) had long recognized the need to prioritize the protection of these unique and biodiverse ecosystems. With help from Tompkins Conservation and Conservacion Patagonica, the 170,500-acre Estancia Chacabuco was acquired. In subsequent years several other adjacent properties have been purchased from willing sellers, bringing the currently total area of protected land to close to 200,000 acres. Eventually, Patagonia Park will be combined with the Jeinimeni National Reserve to the north and the Tamango National Reserve to the south, to create a 640,000-acre Patagonia National Park. This will allow bi-national trans-boundary access across the border of Chile and Argentina and will provide ecosystem continuity, wildlife corridors, and tourist driving and hiking circuits.

“For Conservación Patagonica it is an honour to receive the Wildlife Friendly™ Certification in Chile which is a LDGlandmark supporting the feasibility of traditional livestock activities in Patagonia coexisting with top predators such as pumas”, said Paula Herrera, a veterinary doctor and livestock manager for the Park. “It has been a long process, over eight years involving changes in the carrying capacity, herding practices and a strong involvement of local gauchos. Today, we are very proud to reach the point where our neighbors recognize our status as a protected area, and the high quality of our products (meat, wool and breeding stock) associated with different livestock management practices such as the pioneering use of livestock guardian dogs to reduce predation in southern Patagonia.

 

LGD2“We are thrilled to recognize the incredible restoration, conservation and coexistence work happening here in Patagonia Park,” said WFEN Executive Director Julie Stein during a recent visit to the park to meet with the wildlife team and other staff. “It is truly inspiring to witness first hand this celebration of wild places including the hard but essential work to coexist with apex predators like pumas and by proving that the local economy can be supported through Wildlife Friendly™ tourism and products. We don’t have to choose between thriving businesses and thriving biodiversity – both are possible and in fact are inter-dependent.”

Efforts at Patagonia Park include extensive grasslands restoration, removal of over 400 miles of fencing which fragmented critical habitat by blocking wildlife corridors and entangling species like Guanacos in barbed wire leading to mortality. There is also an endangered Huemul Deer recovery program, a breeding center for Darwin’s Rheas, an Andean Condor reintroduction effort, and Puma monitoring, as well as a thriving livestock guard dog program to protect livestock from predation.

Patagonia Park is an initiative led by Conservación Patagonica since 2004, whose main goal throughout has been the formal donation of the land to the Chilean State to create Patagonia National Park, an agreement which was finalized and signed by the Chilean President President Michelle Bachelet on March 15 2017.

“The need for people and wildlife to not only coexist but to benefit each other is a challenge for protected areas and neighboring lands and communities,” said Cristián Saucedo, Conservation Director. At Conservación Patagónica, we believe this, and we invite other Chilean initiatives to be part of the Wildlife Friendly Enterprise Network, because we see this as a unique opportunity which links tourism, conservation, local communities and caring for the land as all part of our long- term vision for wild lands in Chile.”

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About Wildlife Friendly Enterprise Network 

WFEN and its certification programs represent grassroots farmers, ranchers, artisans, indigenous peoples 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, and Latin and North America, including the Snow Leopard, Tiger, Elephant, Cheetah, Red Panda, and Wolf; and benefit over 200,000 people through increased food security, income and employment. For more information visit: www.wildlifefriendly.org

About Patagonia Park 

Conservacion Patagonica works to create national parks in Patagonia that save and restore wildlands and wildlife, inspire care for the natural world, and generate healthy economic opportunities for local communities. For more information see www.tompkinsconservation.org / www.kristinetompkins.com / www.parquepatagonia.org

Tompkins Conservation: https://www.facebook.com/tompkinsconservation/

Patagonia Park: https://www.facebook.com/parquepatagoniaoficial/ 

Conservacion Patagonica: https://www.facebook.com/ProtectPatagonia/ 

Conservacion Patagonica: https://www.instagram.com/conservacionpatagonica/ 

Patagonia Park: https://www.instagram.com/parquepatagonia/ 

Contact: 

Patagonia Park 

Dr. Paula Herrera, Livestock guardian dog program: pherrera@conservacionpatagonica.cl 

Dr. Cristián Saucedo, Director of Wildlife Projects: csaucedo@conservacionpatagonica.cl 

Alison Kelman, US Media Contact: alison.kelman@tompkinsconservation.org 

Wildlife Friendly 

Julie Stein: Julie@wildlifefriendly.org 

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Tea companies join forces with wildlife conservation efforts to launch the world’s first certification program aiming to provide incentives for conservation of elephants in the wild

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

ASSAM, India – November 29, 2016 – The Wildlife Friendly Enterprise Network (WFEN) and the University of Montana jointly announce a first-of-its kind certification program which will empower consumers to play an active role in conservation, and provide tea-growing companies with a financial incentive to make positive changes for elephants within tea plantations. The Balipara Foundation of India has spearheaded support for this initiative by extending an invitation to Indian tea companies to join the effort to implement specific changes that top elephant experts agree will have positive impacts on Asian elephant conservation.

Photo © Anshuma Basumatary

Photo © Anshuma Basumatary

Injury, electrocution, poison and other conflicts with humans, combined with widespread habitat loss and degradation, have left this species under great pressure to survive in the wild long-term. Asian elephant populations are declining faster than their better-known African elephant cousins. In a number of countries Asian elephants are extinct or nearly extinct in the wild, although the media and general public remain largely unaware that this species may someday face widespread extinction if the trend is not reversed with strategic and well-timed conservation interventions.

Certified Elephant Friendly™ Tea has been developed as a result of years of research and community-based conservation effort in Assam, the primary tea growing region in India, focusing on identifying the key threats to elephants and strategies to address them. As a partner in this new initiative, University of Montana’s Lisa Mills says, “It is time to recognize that the very things that we buy across the globe are often in direct odds with the conservation of wildlife. If the products we purchase were an opportunity to reverse this trend, for elephants to last a bit longer and roam a bit more freely on this earth, would we pay the price? Can we have our tea and drink it too?” With rapid growth in the tea market in the U.S. in 2015 and 2016, and consumers becoming increasingly aware of and concerned about how their spending impacts the environment, retailers and U.S. based tea companies have expressed early interest in marketing products certified under this program. There is also interest in certification of other products as Elephant FriendlyTM, such as coffee grown in elephant movement areas in south India.

“Elephant populations are in trouble wherever they exist around the world,” said WFEN Director Julie Stein. “Poaching and the illegal wildlife trade are having devastating effects on populations, with habitat conversion and human-elephant conflict both creating additional compounding mortality. Elephants simply cannot reproduce fast enough to survive this crisis. These are complex issues to solve and global citizens are often left feeling helpless as they watch species blink out before their eyes and in their own lifetimes, but now consumers can be empowered to do something tangible to reward ethical companies that are going the extra mile to coexist with elephants so that their children will not live in a world without elephants.”

The Elephant Friendly™ Tea Certification Program was announced at the Balipara Foundation’s Eastern Himalayan Naturenomics™ Forum in November 2016 in Guwahati, India, which was held in conjunction with the IUCN Asian Elephant Specialist Group meeting. This important gathering of the some of the world’s top Asian Elephant experts was also an opportunity to bring major tea industry representatives together to plan action steps in support of the
long-term survival of Asian elephants. Discussions around the concept of Elephant Friendly Tea™ included major tea companies such as Amalgamated Tea (APPL), the second largest tea company in India, the India Tea Association, other tea companies and representatives from leading conservation organizations from across the globe.

tea-garden-worker

Photo © Lisa Mills

The tea-growing estates of India, established in the 1800’s, replaced former elephant habitat with plantations. Worker homes, roads, irrigation ditches, fencing and other human-driven activity expanded with the growth of the industry and continues to this day. These non-Elephant Friendly barriers pose a real threat to ancient migration patterns and thus the survival of elephant herds that must access reliable sources of water and food, as well as safe places to raise their young. Because natural cycles of native forest growth depend on seed dispersal by elephants as they move and deposit undigested tree seeds to forest openings, elephants are often referred to as the “Farmers of the Forest.” Elephant Friendly Tea™ will give tea drinkers around the world an important role in helping to ensure these iconic and charismatic animals have a future in the wild.

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About University of Montana

The University of Montana is part of the Montana State University Education System in the U.S.A., and is home to the top-ranked Wildlife Biology Program in North America, as well as to one of the top Business Schools in the nation that emphasizes sustainable business development. Through the university’s Broader Impacts Group, wildlife conservation research and enterprise come together to help address some of the world’s toughest challenges around conservation in the face of major global changes. http://www.umt.edu/

About Wildlife Friendly Enterprise Network

WFEN is the global brand leader on threatened and endangered species-focused certification programs, from Gorilla Friendly™ to Predator Friendly® to Jaguar and Sea Turtle Friendly™ certification programs. WFEN represents global companies as well as 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

Contacts:

Julie Stein, Executive Director
Wildlife Friendly Enterprise Network
julie@wildlifefriendly.org

Lisa Mills, Program Manager, Elephants and Tea
Broader Impacts Group, University of Montana
lisa.mills@mso.umt.edu

Banner photo credit: Subit Sawra

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WCS Argentina’s Patagonian Fibers with a Conscience™ Program and Certified Wildlife Friendly™ Ranchers Make Wool Available Sustainable Fashion Buyers

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Puerto madryn, Argentina (November 4, 2016)—The Wildlife Friendly Enterprise Network (WFEN) and the Wildlife Conservation Society-Argentina (WCS) are pleased to announce traceable Certified Wildlife Friendly® wool—part of the “Patagonian Fibers with a Conscience” program—from the “Merino de Peninsula Valdés™” ranchers who raise wool in coexistence with wildlife on Peninsula Valdés. The traceable certified wool is now available for purchase through a new online portal.

Photo © Ricardo Baldi

Photo © Ricardo Baldi

WCS Argentina supports the ranchers of the Merino Peninsula Valdés™ group who are committed to managing their ranches to allow healthy populations of guanacos, rheas, and maras to co-exist with their sheep, and to use non-lethal methods to control predation by pumas, chilla foxes, and Geoffroy’s and pampas cats. Fundación Vida Silvestre Argentina (FVSA) will provide third-party verification of compliance with commitments and collaborate with WCS to monitor impacts on wildlife. “We all agree in making the coexistence between sheep ranching and healthy wildlife a long-term achievement,” said Alejandro Arias, coordinator of the FVSA program in Península Valdés.

Península Valdés is a 4,000square-kilometer (1,544 square miles) protected area in Patagonia, declared a UNESCO Natural World Heritage Site in 1999. Compared to other sites in the region, the steppe of Península Valdés still harbors significant populations of native wildlife, and its waters are critical habitat for southern right whales, sea lions, and elephant seals during reproduction. Although a management plan has been effective in conserving coastal wildlife, the land is privately owned and sheep ranching is widespread within the area.

“These ranchers are committed to implement wildlife-friendly practices because they are convinced that their economic futures are better served by moving away from maximizing sheep stocking rates on their ranches and adding value by conserving native species at Península Valdés, an emblematic site of Patagonia. To achieve our goals, we are implementing management actions based on scientific research on wildlife ecology,” said Ricardo Baldi, a scientist from CONICET, the Argentine national science agency, and consultant for WCS.

Photo © Ricardo Baldi

Photo © Ricardo Baldi

“’Patagonian Fibers with a Conscience™’ serves as an inspiring example of how to combine sustainability with effective conservation,” said Dr. Guillermo Harris, Director of WCS’s Argentina Program. “We’re showing that we can protect guanacos and other wildlife and support the local economy. It’s a win-win for Peninsula Valdés.” WCS work with these ranchers is supported by the USFWS Wildlife without Borders program.

“We’ve had keen interest in this wool from the sustainable fashion industry,” said Julie Stein, Executive Director of WFEN, a global community dedicated to enterprises that contribute to the conservation of threatened wildlife and to the economic vitality of rural landscapes. “It’s very exciting.  For example, luxury-brand Bolek, has utilized this wool for their upcoming knitwear capsule collection.“

“Projects like Wildlife Friendly® and Merino de Peninsula Valdés™ give new designers like me the unique opportunity to do what is right from the beginning,” said Sarah Chojecki, founder of Bolek.   Ms. Chojecki, a graduate of the Fashion Institute of Technology, is headquartered in New York City and curated a partnership with Wildlife Friendly® on the basis that consumers should have ecological awareness and sustainability in the forefront of their minds when purchasing.

Sarah Chojecki of luxury brand Bolek

Sarah Chojecki of luxury brand Bolek

“This is one of the only landscapes in the world where wool is produced adjacent to a thriving marine ecosystem. It’s special,” Ms. Chojecki mused. “To have ranchers that go the extra mile to allow wildlife to have a safe refuge on private lands. It’s important. More individuals should be like this.”

“We applaud forward thinking designers like Ms. Chojecki for building wildlife and sustainability into the DNA of their companies,” said Ms. Stein.

The shearing season in Patagonia occurs during October and November and wool is available for purchase beginning in December of each year. To learn more about wool specifications please visit the Merino de Península Valdés website. To inquire about purchasing Certified Wildlife Friendly® wool from the Merino de Península Valdés™ group please contact Merino de Peninsula Valdés

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About Wildlife Friendly Enterprise Network

WFEN and its Certified Wildlife Friendly®, Predator Friendly®, Certified Gorilla Friendly™, Jaguar and Sea Turtle Friendly™ certification programs represent grassroots farmers, ranchers, artisans, indigenous peoples 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, and Latin and North America, including the Snow Leopard, Elephant, Tiger, Cheetah, Red Panda, and Wolf; and benefit over 200,000 people through increased food security, income and employment. For more information visit: www.wildlifefriendly.org

About the Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS)

MISSION: WCS saves wildlife and wild places worldwide through science, conservation action, education, and inspiring people to value nature. VISION: WCS envisions a world where wildlife thrives in healthy lands and seas, valued by societies that embrace and benefit from the diversity and integrity of life on earth. To achieve our mission, WCS, based at the Bronx Zoo, harnesses the power of its Global Conservation Program in more than 60 nations and in all the world’s oceans and its five wildlife parks in New York City, visited by 4 million people annually. WCS combines its expertise in the field, zoos, and aquarium to achieve its conservation mission.

Visit: www.wcs.org;

http://www.facebook.com/TheWCS;

http://www.youtube.com/user/WCSMedia

Follow: @thewcs

Contact: 

Wildlife Friendly 

Julie Stein: Julie@wildlifefriendly.org
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New conservation enterprise, Jungle Organics, supports smallholder women farmers producing high quality spices in harmony with wildlife

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Photo © Kaavya Varma

Photo © Kaavya Varma

 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.”

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Photo © Kaavya Varma

“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.”

jo-tiger

Photo © Kaavya Varma

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.

 

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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 team@jungleorganics.in 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

Contacts:                                                                                            

Julie Stein, Executive Director
Wildlife Friendly Enterprise Network
julie@wildlifefriendly.org

Kaavya Varma, Founder & CEO
Jungle OrganicsTM
kaavya@jungleorganics.in

JFlogosformatted

First-of-its-kind Certified Jaguar Friendly™ label will empower farmers and ranchers, consumers and businesses to protect the largest wild cat in the Western Hemisphere

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

GOIÁS, Brazil, Bogotá, Colombia, Heredia, Costa Rica – MAY 04 2016 The Wildlife Friendly Enterprise Network (WFEN), Jaguar Conservation Fund – Brazil (JCF), Proyecto de conservación de Aguas y Tierras (ProCAT Colombia)-Colombia and Sierra to Sea Institute (S2S) – Costa Rica, announce a new collaborative effort to harness market forces for big cat conservation called Jaguar Friendly™. Farmers, ranchers and agricultural producers in these three important jaguar range countries will put in place Jaguar Friendly™ farming practices that maintain forest canopy to protect these iconic cats in rural agricultural landscapes and enable connectivity between protected areas. Through this initiative, companies that source products grown on land actively used by jaguars will M2E62L196-195R385B312be able to give consumers the choice to support conservation efforts by choosing Jaguar Friendly™ products including beef, cattle, coffee, sugar cane, pineapple, honey, fruit crops, flowers and tourism.

“We are really excited about the Jaguar Friendly™ initiative” said WFEN Director Julie Stein, “because it will allow us to test the idea of using certification, incentives, and market forces to ensure safe passage for these cats as they leave protected areas and move across agricultural lands, where they sometimes come into conflict with people or livestock. Global consumers are increasingly aware that wildlife, especially large carnivores, are often the invisible collateral damage of our food production systems.
Jaguar Friendly™ will give them a way to vote for coexistence with their wallets.”

In Brazil, home to 50% of the world’s jaguars, 80% of jaguar populations are not genetically viable over the long-term.
The consequence of this is that Brazilian jaguars must live side-by-side with farmers and ranchers for survival. JCF President Leandro Silveira says “We give a lot of credit to farmers as being part of the solution rather than part of the problem when we look at jaguar conservation here. Especially when you consider that less than 10% of the country is under formal protection.” JCF has been working with landowners to find viable and proactive ways to protect the jaguar in areas where there are economic losses from predation. “The Jaguar Friendly™ approach is a way to acknowledge the important role ranchers play in protecting this magnificent cat,” said Silveira.

JCF Jaguar Brazil“In Colombia the conflict between wildlife-and local farmers is increasing due to loss of habitat from deforestation and agricultural development, explains Diego Zárrate Charry, Research Coordinator of ProCAT Colombia. “Historically, local people have seen jaguars as their enemy. By involving local people in the design of the Jaguar Friendly™ initiative and working closely with coffee producers in jaguar habitat, we are seeing a growing appreciation by farmers of the value of wild jaguars and recognition of the important role they play on the landscape.”

Dr. José F. González-Maya, the Scientific Director for ProCAT Colombia and The Sierra to Sea Institute,Costa Rica, has been advocating for this change as well. “By promoting ‘predator-friendly’ agricultural practices, the Jaguar Friendly™ initiative provides incentives for farmers making jaguars an asset rather than a threat,” said Dr. González-Maya.

“We live in a world where humans are part of the economy of nature, whether we like it or not. Our ultimate vision is to create an economy that supports nature rather than working against it,” said Dr. Jan Schipper, Postdoctoral fellow for Arizona State University and the Arizona Centre for Nature Conservation/Phoenix Zoo and cofounder of Sierra To Sea Institute, Costa Rica. “If we succeed, we will have a healthier planet. We must empower local people who hold the future of these native animals in their hands to celebrate them and see them as a sign of successful land restoration. The Jaguar Friendly™ initiative will be a catalyst to include biodiversity in the sustainability movement.”

While Jaguars still exist in 18 countries from Mexico to Argentina, they have been eradicated from 40% of their historic range and are extinct in Uruguay and El Salvador. A jaguar was recently documented on video in the U.S. Yet, there has not been evidence of a U.S. breeding population for more than 50 years. Top threats to the jaguar include deforestation, habitat fragmentation and persecution by humans.

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About Jaguar Conservation Fund

The Jaguar Conservation Fund (JCF) is a Brazilian non-governmental organization founded in 2002 with the mission “to promote conservation of the jaguar, its natural prey and habitat as well as its peaceful co-existence with humans throughout.” JCF’s philosophy for its jaguar conservation efforts are to consider the local geography, economy and culture while using a collaborative approach. For more information visit: www.jaguar.org.br

About ProCAT-Colombia and Sierra to Sea Costa Rica

ProCAT Colombia and Sierra to Sea Costa Rica are sister NGOs that work to develop biological research and to promote social and cultural sustainable development goals using and interdisciplinary approach including the human and natural dimensions of wild felid conflicts. This integrated conservation strategy to protect key species and vulnerable ecosystems in Talamanca, Costa Rica, and the Andes and Caribbean regions of Colombia works to ensure the wellbeing of biodiversity and humans in functional landscapes with shared benefits.www.procat-conservation.org

About Wildlife Friendly Enterprise Network

WFEN and its Certified Wildlife Friendly®, Predator Friendly®, Certified Gorilla Friendly™, and Jaguar 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, Cheetah, and Wolf; and benefit over 200,000 people through increased food security, income and employment. For more information visit: www.wildlifefriendly.org

Contacts:

Julie Stein, Executive Director
Wildlife Friendly Enterprise Network
julie@wildlifefriendly.org

José F. González-Maya, Scientific Director
Diego Zárrate-Charry, Research Coordinator
ProCAT Colombia & Sierra to Sea Costa Rica
jfgonzalez@procat-conservation.org
dzarrate@procat-conservation.org

Leandro Silveira, President
Jaguar Conservation Fund
l.silveira@jaguar.org.br

 

Farm management practices emphasize coexistence with free-roaming wildlife including Florida panther and endangered gopher tortoises

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Hilliard, FL (March 23, 2016) Traders Hill Farm, a sustainable aquaponic farm whose products grow faster, taste better, last longer and waste nothing, has been recognized as North Florida’s first farm and the state of Florida’s first aquaponic farm to achieve the status of Certified Wildlife Friendly® from the Wildlife Friendly Enterprise Network (WFEN).

Aquaponic lettuces at Traders Hill Farm

Aquaponic lettuces at Traders Hill Farm

Traders Hill Farm is committed to providing a place for wildlife while showcasing the power of aquaponics, which is a combination of aquaculture (raising aquatic animals such as fish) and hydroponics (growing plants in water without soil). At Traders Hill, farm-raised tilapia produce nutrient-rich water that becomes fertilizer for seedlings raised in floating grow-beds inside temperature-controlled greenhouses. As the seedlings consume the nutrients, they clean the water that is then returned to the fish tanks, thus completing the circle.

“We’re proud to represent a revolutionary idea in farming,” said Angela TenBroeck, founder and manager of Traders Hill Farm and a fourth-generation farmer. “By turning fish water into plant food, we deliver delicious, difficult-to-grow produce year-round in a greenhouse but require zero soil, pesticides or herbicides, and we use just 10% of the water of traditional farms.“

The farm’s production practices leave open space for wildlife from its setting near the Okefenokee National Wildlife Refuge

The farm’s production practices leave open space for wildlife from its setting near the Okefenokee National Wildlife Refuge

It is Angela’s efforts to coexist with wildlife through sustainable production practices that has earned her farm its certification from WFEN. As a recycler of North Florida’s abandoned farmland, Traders Hill Farm is located just below the Okefenokee National Wildlife Refuge, a 700 square mile wilderness area. On the farm, wild animals from endangered gopher tortoises to black bears and bobcats can “go for miles and never see humans” according to TenBroeck. A rare Florida panther has been tracked on the property.

Farm Manager Angela TenBroeck

A small flock of laying hens is protected by a portable chicken pen with secure fencing that houses two coops. The chickens are locked inside the coops at night to prevent predation. Cross-hatched by twine to keep the area’s eagles and hawks at bay, the pen is frequently moved to fresh grass. Traders Hill’s pasture raised hens are also Animal Welfare Approved.

The tilapia, which are given ample space and treated with “kindness and dignity” provide all the nutrients the produce needs, in combination with re-circulated rainwater. Fish waste and emulsions serve as additional income streams, purchased as fertilizer by local dairy farms.

This attention to detail transfers to care of the farm’s extensive wetlands and Cypress swamp along the St. Mary’s River. The farm has removed non-native species, planted more than 70,000 long-leaf pines, and continues to work to keep invasive vines at bay.

 

About Traders Hill Farm

Hilliard, Fla.-based Traders Hill Farm raises GMO-free salad greens, mustards, collards, kales, basils, Swiss chards, head lettuce, tomatoes, melons, eggs and tilapia using a revolutionary “no waste” aquaponic system to raise produce that grows faster, lasts longer and tastes better. Greens are available at Jacksonville restaurants and markets, including Southern Roots, Grassroots Natural Market, Native Sun Natural Foods and from the farm. For more information, see www.tradershillfarm.com.

About Wildlife Friendly Enterprise Network

The Wildlife Friendly Enterprise Network and its Certified Wildlife Friendly® and Predator Friendly® programs represent farmers, ranchers, artisans and conservation heroes from around the world. Participating farms in North America maintain and enhance wildlife habitats and employ a mix of careful observation and proactive practices to allow wildlife and livestock to coexist.

Certified Wildlife Friendly® products contribute to the conservation of over twelve million hectares of diverse wetlands, forests, and grasslands; protect keystone endangered species in North America, Europe, Africa, Asia and the Americas, including wolves, elephants, cheetahs, red pandas, and snow leopard, and benefit over 200,000 people through increased food security, income and employment. For more information visit: www.wildlifefriendly.org

 

 

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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.

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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

Contacts:

DotAsia Organisation

Beatrice Chan: beatrice@dot.asia

Ajitora: ajitora@dot.asia

Wildlife Friendly

Julie Stein: Julie@wildlifefriendly.org