A second, possibly more disturbing reason for the demand for pangolins on the Black Market is that they are considered a sought-out delicacy in Chinese and other Asian cuisines. Pangolins are traded frozen and alive, sometimes mixed with snakes and other reptiles to more smoothly pass through the market, and sold to restaurants for a high price. John Sutter, a columnist for CNN traveled to Vietnam and visited a restaurant rumored to prepare pangolin as a dish. He reported seeing a “wild animal” section near the back of the menu, a picture of a live pangolin, and prices. He was told he would have to purchase a whole pangolin at $350 per kilo, and with the smallest pangolin the restaurant had being five kilos, he’d be expected to pay at least $1,750 for his meal. While he did not order a pangolin, he interviewed several Vietnamese citizens who had eaten them before. Pangolins are said to be one of the most expensive meats in Asia, and according to several reports they will always be demanded if their Black Market trade cannot be stopped.
Both of these reasons for the demand of pangolins in Asia can be combated with education and other conservation efforts currently being funded, planned, and implemented.
To learn more about and help these efforts, take a look at these helpful resources: