After learning that a restaurant in Arizona was serving lion burgers in honor of the World Cup, more than 1,100 Change.org community members asked the owners of Il Vinaio to stop selling lion meat. Two days later, the restaurant posted on their Facebook page that "Il Vinaio is no longer serving lion." They also say they've made a donation to a local animal shelter and are investigating the source of the lion meat after questions had been raised by the press about the "free-range" lion farm.
While African lions are not endangered, they are a vulnerable species, and serving lion meat supports inhumane lion farming and creates a demand in the global market for poachers.
Update 06/25/10: Il Vinaio posted the following announcement on their Facebook page: " It is officially Friday, June 25, 2010. il Vinaio is no longer serving Lion. There is no lion on the menu. I won't name names but many thanks to the FDA, Associated Press, Humane Society, and Maricopa County for their part and for showing we can work constructively together."
Thanks to everyone who sent an email to the restaurant owners on behalf of lions.
Il Vinaio restaurant in Mesa, Arizona is selling lion burgers in honor of the World Cup in South Africa.
Owner Cameron Selogie claims that since the lions are farm-raised, it doesn't pose a danger to threatened animals in Africa. But that's not true. Serving up farm-raised wildlife creates a demand, which makes it easier for poachers to get their product onto the market.
Lions do not belong on farms in the midwest, and they don't belong as a novelty item on restaurant menus. Ask the owners of Il Vinaio to take lion meat off the menu.
Photo credit: Zigomar