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Rabbits as livestock require minimal investments and have the ability to reproduce fast. Their feed requirement is low, especially with regard to demand for grain. Their housing and disease control management requirements are also low yet their meat is highly nutritious and healthier source of protein when compared with other sources of meat. The highest number of rabbits as livestock by far exists in China (more than 226 million), followed by North Korea, the Czech Republic and Italy.

In 2007 Karl Szmolinsky a German rabbit breeder sent twelve giant rabbits – each weighted more than 10 kg – to North Korea, so that the communist country could start its own breeding programme. Giant rabbits can produce up to 7 kg of meat, a welcome help to ease the food shortages. But after several cancelled visits to check on the wellbeing of the rabbits, Szmolinsky suspected that his rabbits were eaten at a birthday banquet for Kim Jong-Il, the North Korean leader. Although he he had no evidence of this, he was sure that: “North Korea won’t be getting anything from me any more, they shouldn’t even bother asking.” 


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Technical Notes

Territory size is proportional to the number of rabbits raised as livestock there in 2016.

Data sources
This map uses data by the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) (last accessed March 2018). (last accessed March 2018). We aim to map as complete data as possible and therefore estimate data for missing values. In some cases, missing data for very small territories is not used in the cartogram and that area is therefore omitted in the map.

Further notes on the data, as well as all modification to the original data source are noted in our data sheets. Data for this map will soon be available as a download.

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