Czech markets in everything

by on June 11, 2011 at 12:02 pm in Economics | Permalink

Prague Zoo has started selling what look like ice cream containers but are actually full of elephant dung.

It’s the latest fad among Czech gardeners who are buying out the manure pails to use as fertilizer. The brain behind the project is zoo director Miroslav Bobek, whose surname literally means dung.

Zoo officials estimate they sell around 200 of the 1-kilogram (2.2-pound) containers of dung per weekend, at 70 koruna ($3.90) each. But sales have been so brisk they decided to expand to weekdays.

AP video showed handlers scooping up the manure Thursday and placing it in the white containers to the bemusement of visitors.

The link is here and for the pointer I thank Heath Gordon.

1 msi June 11, 2011 at 12:16 pm

In Seattle they sell Zoo Doo and have a Fecal Fest for larger quantities. Really. Demand is so high they have a lottery. Guess they don’t raise the price because they want to make sure they sell it all.

2 Tomas June 11, 2011 at 1:04 pm

Actually, “bobek” literally refer to a single globule of the kind of scat that comes in numerous small round pellets, “bobky”. It can, however, be euphemistically used to refer to more substantial servings of said material, or conversely to such shapes of other materials. See “hnůj”, “lejno” for how “dung” might translate back to Czech.

3 Rahul June 11, 2011 at 1:22 pm

How do we know they are not passing off horse dung instead? Smell?

4 Warren June 11, 2011 at 3:24 pm

I await Ben & Jerry’s Chocolate Thunderrrr! with anticipation.

Limited quantities, every container autographed!

5 notkevinnealon June 11, 2011 at 5:31 pm

In Edmonton the zoo has an annual poop sale that is a huge hit every year. They sell dung from all of the herbivores by the bag (carnivore poop can apparently carry some nasty bacteria).

6 Jameson Burt June 11, 2011 at 7:32 pm

Yes, dung sales liven Cowen’s markets in everything.
No, this should not be globe-trotter Cowen’s entry for Czechoslovakia.
The Czech’s have developed the arguably most innovative European country.

Look at Czech wood toys with so much innovative variety;
eg, toys whose wheels capture and spin a wooden ball.
Look at their glassware: slight curves up a vase
with each curve having a subtle color that changes with viewing angle.
Look at escalators in 2 story grocery stores
— wow, rolling your grocery cart onto the escalator,
it locks your cart’s wheels into the escalator’s grid
and unlocks those wheels at the escalator’s end!

Czechoslovakia has the innovation of Finland,
though Finland is linguistically connected to Hungary.

7 Mike June 11, 2011 at 9:37 pm

I remember seeing bags of “zoo poo” for sale in the Buffalo Zoo gift shop during a school field trip in the late 80’s. I believe it was from the elephant house.

8 Greg June 12, 2011 at 7:16 pm

We do that here too… My guess is that it’s done world-wide.

9 techreseller June 13, 2011 at 10:06 am

Tyler, you live in the DC area right? The Washington Zoo does the same thing. It sells elephant, hippo etc dung. Great fertilizer. As all herbivore dung is. Why look so far away when it is right under your nose?

The San Diego Zoo sells dung shaped into various animals. You are supposed to put it into your garden and the rain slowly dissolves it.

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