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Africa's and Asia's rhinos are being wiped out for a useless detox drink and a needless business gift. Escalating demand from a small number of Vietnamese businessmen, who are the primary group, is driving the current rhino killing spree.

Nia is the face of the Breaking the Brand project which aims to destroy the current rhino horn brand, in Vietnam, as a 'status enhancing' and 'miracle cure' product.

The nature of this demand is new; it is not based on use in traditional medicine or myths such as the aphrodisiac properties of the horn. Instead, the demand is driven primarily by a relatively small number of (newly) wealthy, status conscious males who use rhino horn mixed with water as a supposed detoxifying drink during drinking sessions with colleagues and clients. The people engaged in this practice are not necessarily concerned about the potion's efficacy. Rather, they are motivated by the perceived status they gain from being part of a very small and exclusive circle who can afford to consume genuine rhino horn. They also give rhino horn as gifts as they negotiate business deals and buy favours.

From interviews with this user group, and the other primary user group, wealthy women (in many cases the wives of these businessmen), Breaking The Brand found only two factors that would motivate them to stop using rhino horn before it is too late for the rhino:

  1. A potential negative impact on their personal health/wellbeing through using rhino horn
  2. A perceived negative impact on their personal status

Because conservation and protection measures alone are unable to curb the killing spree, only addressing the demand side directly can save the rhino from the treat of extinction in the wild.

How will the funds be used?

Your donation will be used to fund the production and roll-out of advertising and social media campaigns firstly in Vietnam and then other Asian countries using rhino horn.

All adverts have been and will continue to be produced with the creative (and pro-bono) support of Nigel Dawson and Randal Glennon, Co-Directors of Three Wise Men ( Breaking The Brand's first two RhiNo campaigns tested the health anxiety angle. An ever increasing number of conservancies in Africa are poisoning their rhinos' horns with a variety of toxins and then dye them in bright colours to discourage poaching. Given that the dyes can be bleached out, but the toxins stay in the horn for 3-4 years, there is a risk of exposure to the end consumers which our two campaigns to-date have highlighted to discourage rhino horn use.

Our next campaign will test the status anxiety angle. Attacking the perceived status associated with the use of rhino horn by businessmen and affluent women.

The campaign funds will be used to publish full-page adverts in key business and lifestyle magazines and in the top selling women's magazine. This also includes publication in Heritage, the in-flight magazine of Viet Nam Airlines. The publications we have selected ensure the adverts reach the target audience.

For more information about the pilot campaign follow the link: and for the LNY campaign:

You can see more information on BTB in a document reviewing the last 12 months of our work:

Are donations tax deductible? Yes

Will I receive a receipt for my donation?
Yes, immediately sent to you by email when approved.

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