China's deadly 'Wet markets' are back, start selling bats, cats and pangolins amid Covid pandemic
New Delhi, Apr 01: China's 'wet markets' have reopened, selling bats, pangolins and dogs for human consumption after easing of lockdown measures across several cities.
Such markets are known for selling live animals such as cats, dogs, fish, rabbits and bats.
Wet markets are named after the melting ice used to preserve the food, as well as the constant washing of the market floors when they are covered in blood from the animals.
The move is dangerous as scientists believe that the Covid-19 causing coronavirus first lurked in a bat in China and hopped to another animal, before getting passed on to humans.
Various reports suggest that a 55-year-old man from China's Hubei province could have been the first person to have contracted Covid-19 through one such 'wet market'.
It should be noted that another coronavirus named SARS (Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome), which broke out in 2002/2003 and led to the deaths of hundreds, was also believed to have originated in a wet market.
Meanwhile, the number of COVID-19 cases climbed to 1,637 in India on Wednesday while the death toll rose to 38, according to the Union Health Ministry.
The number of active COVID-19 cases stands at 1,466, while 132 people were either cured or discharged and one had migrated to another country, the ministry stated.
What is wet market?
A wet market is a market selling fresh meat, fish, produce, and other perishable goods as distinguished from "dry markets" which sell durable goods such as fabric and electronics. Wet markets are common throughout the world.
Wet markets containing live wild animals and wildlife products have been linked to outbreaks of zoonotic diseases including coronavirus disease 2019, but most wet markets are not wildlife markets.
The 'wet' in 'wet market' refers to the constantly wet floors as a consequence of the spraying of fresh produce and cleaning of meat and seafood stalls.
The term 'wet market' originated from Hong Kong English and entered the Oxford English Dictionary in 2016.