Samuel Lee, Christopher Joyce
Market place discussion about Chinese medicine. Includes English translation of comments from merchant, Chun-tseo Hwang.
Patrick(?) Chang, Christopher Joyce
Peter Scott, Christopher Joyce
Sustainable fishery discussion.
NPR/NGS Radio Expeditions
19 Feb 2004
- 22.27535 114.18668
- SONY TCD-D8
- Sennheiser MKH 30
- Sennheiser MKH 40
Decoded MS stereo
Show: Hong Kong/Philippines
Log of DAT #: 5
Engineer: Marty Kurcias
Date: March 2004
(0.07) MK: OK this is continuation from Tape 4. This is Tape 5. This is continuation of the interview in the TCM shop and its MS.
(0.26) OK, um. A lot of people in the industry also share the same concern. They talk about this in their meeting of the merchant association and they realize that this is an important issue to their business. They call for a more sustainable use, attitude and also call for other association because not...they are just one association. They also call for other trade associations and also partition group because it is them who use the, describe the medicine. So they call out to other group as well to address their issue.
(1:28) CK: Which plants and animals are the ones that they most worry about in terms of scarcity and becoming endangered?
(1:28) Translation into Chinese question and response
(2:12) Simon Lee (via interpreter): He says there is no particular species or type of medicine they worry the most. They believe the research in the TCM will be able to deal with this problem to search for alternative or substitute to a particular species or commodity that are running out. This is what he believe.
(2:46) CJ: You can tell him that we're particularly interested in the fish and focusing on that and what kinds of traditional medicines are made from different kinds of fish. If he could list the kinds of medicine they use, I mean sea horse is one but maybe there's more, I mean to give us a list of.
(3:10) Translation into Chinese question and response
(3:41) SL: Apart from seahorse, pie fish (?) and sea star are also used in traditional medicine, but he thinks the foot trade is consumed more marine organism than traditional Chinese medicine.
(3:58) CJ: The third one was the?
(4:00) SL: Sea star.
(4:02) CJ: What is that used for?
(4:04) Translation into Chinese question and response
(4:17) SL: He said the medicinal property of sea star is similar to that of sea horse that is why he say sometime one thing can replace another.
(4:31) CJ: Yeah that's a good point. As things become more scarce are they able to replace things with other sources? Is it common? Is it common to do that?
(4:42) Translation into Chinese question and response
(5:02) SL: Replacing one with another is common in traditional Chinese medicine practice, but he believes that the original prescription which needs certain things, a combination of those will be the best, but it is not the only one that thing can easily be replaced.
(5:28) CJ: When he is sick, or his children, if he has children, are sick does he only use traditional Chinese medicine or does he use some Western, some Chinese?
(5:39) Translation into Chinese question and response
(5:51) SL: When they, he or his family, gets sick, he will consult both traditional Chinese medicine and also Western practitioner.
(6:01) CJ: Is there a difference between the two types of medicine? Is one better for some things and another better for other things?
(6:08) Translation into Chinese question and response
(6:33) SL: There are differences for Cornish? Diseases. Traditional Chinese medicine is far much better. But for emergency cases or surgery type medical needs, Western or modern signs, modern medical signs will be better.
(6:55) CJ: Do you know what sciatica is? Sciatica? It's a disk problem
MK: Spine? Lower spine where the disk slips?
CJ: The disk is the bone, the veterbra.
SL: What is the problem?
CJ: He needs it. What would he use?
(7:21) Translation into Chinese question and response
(7:47) SL: If it is about bone fracture he say the dieital ? along with other herbal medicine together with combination of formula will be good for dealing with the bone fracture, but it might be something else is complicated, so it might be something else. But what he say is if it's a bone fracture check with the dieital?
(8:26) MK: Is TCM something that people prescribe for themselves? Are there particular people in the medical profession, doctors or something, who will prescribe it? Is it used in the hospital? If you went to the hospital for something non-emergency¿
(8:50) CJ: Yeah, I mean are there practitioners who are like doctors who prescribe herbal medicine or are do people just know on their own? If you need TCM do you go to a TCM doctor who says 'Ok take this, this and this?' or do people just know this from tradition?
(9:09) Translation into Chinese question and response
(10:38) SL: It would be much safer to consult a TCM practitioner first to have the diagnosis first and then get a prescription from the practitioner and then buy what he need to make the herbal soup themselves. However, in the ...there may be other formula that may be some sort of tonic of nature, not treating diseases or illnesses. It is a tonic formula which is something that may be good for your body or help your certain organ better. Those are formula people may simply approach the shop then buy them themselves, but it is always recommended to consult a TCM doctor before taking any medicine.
(11:34) CJ: And he's not a TCM doctor, he's a merchant?
(11:36) Translation into Chinese question and response
(11:41) SL: He himself is a practitioner.
CJ: Oh he is!
(11:45) Translation into Chinese question and response
(11:52) SL: What he learned from the college is the qualification as a practitioner.
(12:01) CJ: Does he have any questions for us?
(12:09) CJ: Oh, I forgot to ask 'cause we're going to the Philippines.
SL: He went there too.
CJ: Oh he did? Palawan ?
(12:17) Translation into Chinese question and response
(12:36) SL: At least two, he went to Cebu for a conference and also to the Bohol Island, for a visit to the villages and to talk to the village of people face to face. He also tell them, tell the villager, from the importer point of view not to have a small seahorse. They need a larger one and then allow the sea horse to grow and also breed before being caught.
(13:09) CK: Does he sell pregnant sea horses?
(13:13) Translation into Chinese question and response
(13:54) SL: yes, he also went down to the Philippines and told them not to harvest and not to catch to small sea horse and also not, uh, (CK: pregnant) pregnant sea horse. They have industry practice not to get sea horses
(14:28) Um the have the industry called practice of recommending not to purchase sea horse less than 40 inches and also have a similar __? for the fishermen in the Philippines but sometimes sea horses less than 40 inches come in, but they don't have much they can do about it but to advocate more to both the local trader and also to the village.
(14:59) CJ: One last question. How many merchants are members of this association?
(15:05) Translation into Chinese question and response
(15:13) SL: Um there are around 7 to 800 membership in the association.
(15:20) Translation into Chinese question and response
(15:30) SL: The membership are mostly importer and wholesaler of traditional Chinese medicine material.
CJ: Well thank you very much
(15:38) MK: What percentage is that?
(15:41) Translation into Chinese question and response
(16:11) SL: There are about 20% of the membership importer and for the wholesaler there are about 50%. CJ: 50? SL: Yeah, 50. But some of the wholesaler are also retailer, so they have multiple role.
CJ: Thank you very much.
(16:32) MK: I have two more questions. One, what are some of the different ways that things are prepared? Like, boiled and then you drink the water? Are they ground up and mixed with food? Or ground up and put in little capsules and made into pills -that sort of thing? And the second question¿
(16:55) Translator: One at a time.
(16:57) Translation into Chinese question and response
(17:33) SL: There's a wide range of form of the medicine, sometimes you can get the raw material from the shop, you boil them in the soup and water and then drink the liquid and then discard the rest of the material. The other thing would be more convenient form, something like over the counter drugs. And the drugs, they made into powder and made into small capsules or pills and people can easily take it. And there's a range of traditional way to do it to a more convenience modern way.
(18:23) MK: The other question is, this is by virtue of its name, traditional Chinese medicine. Are there new uses and new, new animals or plants that are still being discovered or researched? Or is most of these practice go back many, many years or is it still, are people still discovering new uses and new animals and things to use for various purposes?
(19:00) Translation into Chinese question and response
(19:37) SL: The traditional Chinese medicine has been evolving, he believe. It more thing will add on to the pharmacopoeia and use and the approach in China is even moving toward merging or integrating with Western medicine so this is the approach in China and is keep evolving and changing. And just my, I just think of the American ginseng, it is something non-native to China, but people get it from elsewhere and then incorporate it into the pharmacopoeia.
(20:21) CJ: I'd just like to ask him to say his name on tape so we know how to pronounce it properly.
(20:26) Translation into Chinese question and response
(20:34) SL: Chun-tseo Hwang (Sp?)
(20:35) Translator: Chun-tseo Hwang
CJ: Thank you very much.
MK: One more time.
(20:42): SL: Chun-tseo Hwang
(20:43) MK: I have one more question. What are some of the treatments or some of the uses for traditional Chinese medicine? What sort of ailments? Is there a particular group of illness or ailments that it's particularly good for or targeted for?
(21:11) Translation into Chinese question and response
(21:51) SL: He said what people call some tumor, something getting bigger and bigger a growth off the some cell, is it called trumor? CJ: Tumor SL: Something like that. Traditional Chinese medicine is good for treating diseases related to tumor and also to bone fracture.
CJ: OK chronic diseases, he said before chronic diseases.
SL: He also mentioned a wide range of chronic diseases.
CJ: So. Thank you very much taking your time out of your busy day. This will help Americans understand Chinese medicine.
(22:51) MK: Ok. Now we need to get some ambiance right here.
(22:58) Ambi Chinese men talking -CJ asks for a photograph.
Tape stops and starts
(23:37) MK: Ok this is ambiance to go with the interview of the gentleman -the proprietor of the TCM shop.
(23:44) Background sounds in TCM shop, woman speaking in Chinese, scissors cutting something, people walking around, phones ringing
(27:36) loud sound of beans? being put into a pan
(27:57) CJ: Ok end of ambiance in TCM shop.
Tape stops and starts
(28:12) SL's Traslator: You rinse it with water and you boil it with ox tail for an hour and a half or up to two hour until the oxtail is edible.
(28:24) CJ: But this is a bunch of different stuff. What is it?
(28:28) CM: I can recognize some and cannot recognize some. This is what we call youconmeuncrak (sp?) is a tree bark of a medicinal tree good for bone. And some other thing, I don't know the English name; the combination of this is good for your bone Mr. Martin. This is a gift from Mr. Hwang.
MK: He really doesn't have to do that.
CJ: Thank you so much. It's good for him. It'll help his back. Bye Bye!
(29:14) CJ and their interpreter discuss whether or not to head back. There are street sounds in the background. Busses, cars, traffic, etc.
(30:05) Tape stops
(30:10) Tape starts: An English woman speaking, briefly,
(30:37) MK: Ok this is the aquarium street, MS low-cut filter, N on the Sonosax and it's Thursday, February 19th Hong Kong. MS pair -this is the left, right, ...looking for me?
CJ: No we just need to meet this guy Terry.
(31:10) Street ambi. People talking, cars passing, children talking -CJ and MK talk about not having to record any more -we've got tons of it
(37:17) Tape stops and starts
(37:18) Still street ambi -CJ talking to random Chinese men
(37:50) Stops and starts
(37:51) Background ambi in a restaurant? In the aquarium. CJ briefs as to what to do in the interview, situates around the microphone.
(38:27) CJ: Ok what is the name of this show?
(38:30) Patrick Chan: Um, this show actually is called Ocean Row, actually it's the same owner of the aquarium.
(38:39) CJ: Just say what your name is and what you do.
(38:42) PC: I'm Patrick Chan and actually I'm a student studying fish biology and I took a project, a final year project with the aquarium fish trade in 1998 for my graduate report.
(38:59) CJ: Ok so maybe you could tell us what some of these fish are that we're seeing here.
(39:03) PC: Oh this is Yellow Tang from Hawaii.
(39:05) MK: What is it?
(39:06) PC: Yellow Tang, from Hawaii.
MK: T-A-N-G. Its one kind of Surgeon Fish.
Sounds of children in background
(39: 19) CJ: How about these, these are brown and spotted white fish?
(39:23) PC: These are called the switch lips? or the ?? in Canada they call them the ¿Chocolate Ones.¿ It's because of the coloration, like chocolate beans like M&Ms.
(39:39) CJ: Where do they come from?
(39:40) PC: Mostly in South East Asia, like Malaysia or the Philippines. It is the Bene Fish? [CJ: What is it again?] TC: Bene Fish - it is one type of the Butterfly Fish. You can see the dorsal fin is elongated. Very attractive, they are also from South East Asia, Pacific Ocean. So, like the purple one is called the Purple Moon Angle Fish. It's from the Indian Ocean.
(40:14) CJ: And these are all salt-water fish?
(40:16) PC: Of course they are all salt water. All wild caught, mostly.
(40:21) MK: And this one here?
(40:22) PC: This one is from the Red Sea. It's called...I forgot the name, but it's a Surgeon Fish it's really expensive. These run about, Hong Kong about, $900 for this one fish.
(40:34) CJ: $900?
(40:35) PC: Yes
(40:37) MK: Hong Kong dollars?
(40:38) PC: Yes, that's about 120 US dollars.
(40:42) CJ: And tell me a bit about the market for aquarium fish in Hong Kong. Is there a big market? And where do they come from?
(40:50) PC: In Hong Kong the global scale is really really small like for the statistics -In 1992 it only constituted about 2-3% of the salt water aquarium fish trade globally. And in 1998, there's only about 500 million dollars of import variable involved. So income variable of other states like USA and UK is much more smaller.
(41:27) CJ: And is Hong Kong a place where fish come and then are reexported somewhere else or are strictly for consumption here?
(41:34) PC: Actually, from the...most of the fish are here for local consumption because they're fresh fish technology has improved those source countries who can provide fish and therefore...like US and UK -is no problem, is mainly for local consumption. And sometimes the fishes try and reexport to China. [**This answer is very difficult to understand**]
(41:56) CJ: Can you tell much about the health of these fish when you look at them because many aquarium fish are caught with cyanide and I wonder if you can tell if these -are there standard for these shops? Do they have to buy them?
(42:09) PC: Actually, the shopkeeper is very careful in purchasing the fish. If they are buying some, a lot good quality fish they would prefer (indistinguishable). Losing money once the shipment comes they open their box and then find the fish all die, so is no good for them. So they should be able to find some source with good quality fish so actually most of the fish you can see are in quite good condition, except some sick one.
(42:37) Background ambi and discussion about talking with Peter.
(43:01) CJ: Can you just say your name and what you do?
(43:04) Peter Scott: My name is Peter Scott; I work for the Marine Aquarium Counsel. I am responsible for their certification standards.
(43:11) CJ: And I wonder if succinctly you can sort of reprise some of the things we said at lunch. For example, when you look at a shop like this in Hong Kong, what are the sort of things that MAC has done to insure that these are healthy fish and that they are taken in a way that's sustainable.
(43:27) PS: Well hopefully these fish will have come through from a sustainable collection area where the area is managed to insure sustainability and volumes and targets are set for species extraction. And then they are caught by net only, without the use of chemicals, such as cyanide and then transported individually, in plastic bags, to the shop.
(43:50) CJ: And what has MAC, the Marine Aquarium Counsel, done to guarantee that?
(43:54) PS: Well we have certification standards that set levels for management of the fishery and also the way that the fish should be handled and transported to shops such as this shop.
(44:10) CJ: And how is that guaranteed? I mean you obviously don't, MAC doesn't have a deal with this shop.
(44:16) PS: No its, MAC is an organization that writes standards and also accredits independent certification companies to undertake certification to the MAC standards. They are like, independent organizations. And this shop would apply to be assessed to these standards and pay the money to the city for a, hopefully a certificate at the end of the day.
(44:43) CJ: In a sense it's like a chain of custody?
(44:45) PS: It's a chain of custody, yah certification process. From reef through to retail.
(44:51) CJ: I've heard also a term for the downside, or what you're trying to stop. Which is the attitude that aquarium fish is like cut flowers because people just get used to the idea that they die all the time and they think that that's normal.
(45:04) PS: Yeah, one of the important aspects of the MAC standards is a mortality limit which is set at 1% at each link of the chain. So hopefully, the fish that come through from reef to retail with this 1% mortality met.
(45:20) CJ: And how long has this been going on with the Marine Aquarium Council and this certification standard?
(45:24) PS: Really the programs been active since November 2001.
(45:29) CJ: And the ultimate goal of all this is? I mean, I know it may be stating the obvious, but for most people -what's the point?
(45:35) PS: The ultimate goal is insure that the trade is sustainable and that the collectors have an income for the future by insuring that they don't overfish the resource, and by maximizing that the fish are healthy, therefore so many fish don't have to be caught to maintain the hobby.
(45:57) CJ: How would you say, how would you judge the danger that reefs are in because of unregulated reef fishing for aquarium fish, as well as the live reef trade?
(46:10) PS: Well I think the, unfortunately quite a few collectors in various countries, perhaps mainly in the Philippines and Indonesia have been taught to use chemicals so they can extract large volumes of fish. I think what MAC is doing is prohibiting chemical use within its program so therefore the number of fish is maximized.
(46:31) CJ: And there are some other things that the lay person wouldn't understand, for example what you call spawning aggregations where lots of fish go to one place at one time to spawn and obviously, if you're a fisherman, that's a good place to fish and MAC is trying to deal with this in a way -could you state what the problem is and how MAC is trying to deal with it?
(46:52) PS: Well obviously with our live reef food fish standards work, a spawning aggregation is very attractive to a fisherman, it's an easy hit, the fish are shoaling around and can be easily caught. MAC is trying to insure through its standards work on the live reef trade that these aggregations are not fished and that these fish are caught normally with hook and line.
(47:16) Stand and get some ambiance
(47:29) MK: Ok, this is ambiance in the aquarium shop and its in stereo.
(47:34) Abmi in shop, water running, people talking
(49:54) CJ: Ok that should do for ambiance for behind the interviews with Patrick Chan and Peter Scott. And up next we'll get some sounds of fish tanks with the water gurgle -as if we don't have enough.
(50:08) Ambi of water gurgling in fish tanks -sound of people talking in background
(52:17) Rustling heard in the background, over the sound of the tanks gurgling
(53:25) CJ: Ok that last bit of rustling and stuff you herd was a guy bagging up a fish for a customer, putting it in a plastic bag and wrapping a rubber band around it. There are some of the most amazing creatures in here. Striped, all the colors of the rainbow, brilliant blues and yellows and blacks and fluorescent pinks, black and white stripped, brown and white and black polka dots. All different shapes, oranges, and brilliant blues and yellows. Little guys and big guys. Very pretty.
(54:23) Ambi of leaving the store, street sounds, cars, people talking
(54:37) CJ: Ok I just want to get a little ambiance outside the shop here.
(54:39) MK: Ok this is ambiance outside the aquarium shop.
(54:44) Ambi outside on the street, large trucks passing, people talking
(55:19) CJ: Actually, I'm going to move one store down, cause our guys are talking over there.
(55:25) Sound of people talking loudly, street noises, laughing, footsteps
(56:19) CJ: All right, that should do it.
(56:30) TAPE STOPS