Donkey leather

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Donkey Leather-01.jpg

Objects made from donkey leather are not known. Donkey skins are processed in China to produce gelatine, which is then used in the manufacture of traditional medicine. The Chinese call this raw material "ejiao" (also "colla corii asini" or "donkey hide glue").

Since keeping donkeys has declined in China, skins have been smuggled into the country. In 2015 1,200 donkey hides from Karachi in Pakistan were seized in Hong Kong and another 4,736 donkey hides in 2017 in Karachi. Exports were banned because donkeys were illegally slaughtered or poisoned and the skins and the meat were offered for sale with false declarations.

In 2016, several men were arrested in Botswana who illegally tried to sell donkey skins in Hong Kong and China.

It was estimated in 2017 that about 1 million donkey skins are traded every year, but the demand from China is more likely to be between 4 and 10 million hides.

In 2019, the prognosis was that the population of donkeys worldwide will be reduced by another 50% by 2025. This is likely to lead to increased illegal slaughter, smuggling and fraud as the demand for ejiao remains high.

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