While in the short-term demand reduction campaigns will be needed to change people’s motivations to consume illegal and endangered wildlife ‘products’, to ensure a long-term sustainable future we must provide alternative ways to engage with nature. This involves understanding how to re-direct desire in specific user groups, which is the last step in targeted demand reduction campaigns.
We cannot assume that we can simply re-direct these users to ‘legal luxury consumption’. Reverting to mainstream luxury products may not fulfil their desire and may be seen as a backward step by some elite users of illegal wildlife products. Many of the target groups already engage in all forms of ‘legal luxury consumption’ (including the super-brands and hyper-brands), which is one of the reasons they have moved to ‘illegal luxury consumption’ to differentiate themselves from the broader elite group.