horn and/or Tiger bone were seen in 10.8% of the total of 442 businesses visited in 1994.
In 1995, the availability of such prohibited items remained low. There was an increase from 1994 in the percentage of cases where rhinoceros horn or horn powder was seen (to 8.5% of businesses where horn was requested and 12% of medicine market stalls visited), but an apparent decrease in availability of commercially packaged Tiger-bone wine and plasters (seen in 7.2% of businesses where requested and at 2.6% of medicine-market stalls visited). However, investigators noted several formulas similar to Tiger-bone plasters and wines on the market in 1995, which may have contained Tiger-bone, although not declaring so. Manufactured Chinese medicines, other than wines and plasters, labelled as containing rhinoceros horn and/or Tiger bone were seen in 10.7% of the total of 355 businesses visited in 1995.
In 1996, there was again an apparent increase in the percentage of businesses where rhinoceros horn or rhinoceros horn powder was seen (to 12.5% of those where horn was requested), but the level of availability decreased at medicine markets, (where horn or powder were seen with 10.6% of medicine-market vendors). There was an apparent further decrease in availability of Tiger-bone wines and plasters in businesses (seen in 2.9% of businesses where requested: wines and plasters were not surveyed for at medicine markets in 1996) and there was little change recorded in the level of other manufactured Chinese medicines purporting to contain rhinoceros horn and/or Tiger bone (seen in 13.6% of the total of 280 businesses in 1996).
When interpreting all these findings it is important to note that variations over time may be attributable merely to chance, as retail outlets were not selected in a manner that would provide statistically correct comparisons over the three years, 1994-1996.
TRAFFIC's 1995 mail survey of pharmaceutical manufacturers in China duplicated methods used in a 1991 survey conducted by World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF) Hong Kong and TRAFFIC East Asia-Japan. Where the focus of the 1991 mail survey was on use of derivatives of several endangered species, the 1995 survey focused solely on use of Tiger bone. In 1995, 207 companies were contacted, 32 of which replied, four (13%) of which offered to sell medicines containing Tiger bone. Two of these four expressed willingness to manufacture new medicines containing Tiger bone.
Reports, both official and anecdotal, supported by the fact that raw rhinoceros horn and rhinoceros horn and Tiger-bone products were never present in more than 13.6% of outlets, of any category,