Perhaps nowhere is more closely associated with rhinos than South Africa. The country is home to the largest population of rhinos on Earth, living in iconic landscapes like Kruger National Park. They even feature on the 10-rand banknote! Rhinos are certainly a key part of South African culture.
South Africa is also famous for its unique culinary heritage, including biltong, a spiced, cured meat snack that is now enjoyed around the world. Since January 2019, we have been working in partnership with Cruga Biltong, the UK’s leading biltong brand made to an authentic South African recipe. Recognising the South African heritage at the heart of their products, the team wanted to help protect one of the country’s most emblematic species: the rhino. For every pack of Cruga Biltong sold, a donation will be channelled towards rhino conservation programmes protecting critically endangered rhino species across Africa and Asia.
But why is this all necessary?
South Africa is bearing the brunt of a poaching epidemic. In the past decade, almost 8,000 rhinos were killed for their horns in the country. Without action, South Africa would risk losing its rhinos – an irreplaceable part of the country’s natural heritage.
Thanks to partners like Cruga we are supporting parks such as Hluhluwe-iMfolozi. Hluhluwe-iMfolozi Park (HiP) has suffered intense poaching attacks in recent years, and rangers are at the heart of the Park’s strategy to reduce this threat. Rangers are the first line of defence for the Park, and often spend weeks, if not months, at a time patrolling remote poaching hotspots. To do their important work effectively, the team must be well-trained and equipped.
Often, it’s the simple stuff that makes the difference for rangers. After an exhausting day on patrol, thanks to the support of our partners and donors, HiP’s rangers now have gas stoves to cook a hot meal, and comfortable mattresses to rest and recover. Whilst these might seem like very basic pieces of kit, they can make the world of difference for boosting morale and ensuring rangers get a well-deserved break after a long, difficult day.
The team at Cruga haven’t just been raising funds for rhinos. They’ve also supported our incredible fundraisers at events including the London Marathon. This year, Cruga joined our post-race picnic, bringing biltong to share with our incredible (and somewhat exhausted!) runners: a treat for taking on the 26.2 mile challenge in support of rhino conservation efforts!
James Newitt, CEO of New World Foods Europe, said, “We wished to partner with a charity that many of us are passionate about. There is also a meaningful connection with biltong, being an authentic African style meat snack. Cruga and Save the Rhino is an exciting partnership for us to be aligned with and we look forward to helping to raise money and support for this charity.”
Thanks to partners like Cruga, we can continue supporting programmes making a real difference for rhinos. Michaela Butorova, Partnerships Manager at Save the Rhino, said, “We’ve loved working with the team at Cruga Biltong to raise vital funds for rhino conservation across the globe. We’re looking forward to continuing our partnership next year, working together to secure a better future for all five species of rhinos in the wild!”
In 2019, Cruga Biltong has committed to donating a minimum of £10,000 to support Save the Rhino’s work protecting critically endangered rhinos across Africa and Asia. Thank you Cruga Biltong!