Roaring with Disapproval for Lion Meat at M. Wells Steakhouse

Roaring with Disapproval for Lion Meat at M. Wells Steakhouse
Wednesday, November 20, 2013
Washington, D.C.

Jeffrey Flocken, North American Regional Director, International Fund for Animal Welfare (IFAW), issued the following statement regarding the opening of M. Wells Steakhouse and the possibility of the inclusion of lion meat on the menu: 

“As M. Wells Steakhouse opens its doors in Long Island City, we strongly urge them against including lion meat on their menu. Not only is it irresponsible to serve an animal that is at risk of extinction, history has shown that diners have no appetite for it.

The African lion population has declined by more than 50 percent over the last three decades, and as few as 32,000 remain in the wild. The U.S. government is currently reviewing a petition based on sound scientific data to list the African lion as endangered under the U.S. Endangered Species Act. If African lions are listed, serving their meat in the U.S. will be illegal.

Beyond the legalities, restaurants serving lion meat send a message that they support the exploitation of endangered animals. Many have recognized and remedied that. Recently, Mokutanya Yakitori (Burlingame, California), Dave’s Pizza and Burger (Colonie, New York) and Taste and See Restaurant (Wichita, Kansas), all removed African lion meat from their menus after negative backlash from the public and customers. Additionally, a recent Synovate poll found that 63 percent of Americans would stop frequenting an establishment if it started serving lion meat.

As they celebrate their opening, M. Wells Steakhouse should also celebrate the conservation of the majestic African lion, not relegate the king of the jungle to a royal feast.”

To learn more about IFAW’s work to protect African lions, please visit HelpAfricanLions.org.. 

About IFAW (the International Fund for Animal Welfare)
Founded in 1969, IFAW saves animals in crisis around the world. With projects in more than 40 countries, IFAW rescues individual animals, works to prevent cruelty to animals, and advocates for the protection of wildlife and habitats. For more information, visit www.ifaw.org. Follow us on Facebook and Twitter

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Jason Bell, Program Director, Elephants Regional Director, South Africa
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Jeffrey Flocken, Regional Director, North America
Regional Director, North America
Jordi Casamitjana, Campaigns and Enforcement Manager, IFAW UK
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Director, International Policy & Program Planning
Peter Pueschel, Director, International Environmental Agreements
Director, International Environmental Agreements
Sonja Van Tichelen, Regional Director, European Union
Regional Director, European Union
Tania McCrea-Steele, Campaigns and Enforcement Manager, IFAW UK
Campaigns and Enforcement Manager, IFAW UK