Global Rosewood Crisis: EIA

Rosewood, or Hongmu, refers to 29 species that produce durable beautiful wood used for antique furniture reproduction. “The insatiable demand for scarce hongmu resources has caused the expansion of supply chains from Southeast Asia to new frontiers in Africa and Central America,” reports Environmental Investigation Agency. “Prior to the surge in international demand, domestic markets in Africa had little interest in commercializing mukula; the timber was mainly used by villagers for housing construction.” Asian suppliers now target related species including mukula, native to forests in Burundi, Malawi, the Democratic Republic of Congo, Tanzania and Zambia. In all, 95 countries have sent rosewood to China since 2000. Timber traffickers are decimating mukula forests in central and southern Africa – habitat for primates, elephants, bees and more – with extinction expected before 2025. Zambia imposed a ban on cutting the trees, but the exporters rely on trickery, bribes and force. By 2014, the habitat loss throughout Africa is evident, and the countries try bans, export permits, tracking systems, log-size limits and public pressure to slow the unsustainable harvests. The agency urges genus-wide protections to include species similar to rosewood. – YaleGlobal

Global Rosewood Crisis: EIA

Rosewood is a top smuggled wildlife product, reports the UN Office on Drugs and Crime; scarcity and protections drive traffickers to other species
Saturday, August 24, 2019

Read the article from the Environment Investigation Agency about attempts to protect mukala forests of Africa.

hongmu rosewood exports to China by region

© Environmental Investigation Agency, Inc. 2019.