China is offering a government buy-out to wildlife farmers in two provinces to help transition those whose livelihoods depend on breeding wild species for consumption away from the practice.
It is part of the country’s clampdown on the wildlife trade following the outbreak of the coronavirus which originated in Wuhan, China late last year. The origins of the pandemic are still being investigated but one of the suspected sources is the Huanan Seafood Wholesale Market in the city which included a live animal section reportedly selling more than 30 species of animals including live wolf pups, golden cicadas, scorpions and civets. China closed the market in January.
On the whole, researchers agree that the most plausible explanation is that the virus made the jump from an animal to human in a “zoonotic spillover” event.