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Elle MacPherson apologizes for remarks about powdered rhino horn, gets letter from PETA

07/06/2010 by Corinne Heller

Elle MacPherson apologizes for remarks about powdered rhino horn, gets letter from PETA Elle MacPherson says she regrets "any distress or offense" taken when she told a UK newspaper she consumed powdered rhino horn for medicinal purposes, which prompted criticism from animal rights groups, including PETA.

The 47-year-old Australian supermodel, dubbed "The Body", had told the London Times newspaper in response to a question about her use of Chinese medicine that the substance tasted "a little bit like crushed bone and fungus in a capsule" and said it "works for me."

PETA President Ingrid E. Newkirk said she sent McPherson a letter on Tuesday that said: "Elle, you are a role model in many ways, and I hope you will agree that wildlife should be left in peace. Will you please condemn the trade in rhino horn and other substances that are stolen from wild animals? I look forward to hearing back from you."

MacPherson told Australian website news.co.au that she had "never knowingly consumed or encouraged the use or consumption of any products which contain material derived from endangered species".

Other groups, such as the International Fund for Animal Welfare and Humane Society International had condemned MacPherson's remarks to the Times.

In ancient Chinese Medicine, ground-up rhino horns are used to treat fever, gout, snakebites, hallucinations and other ailments. However, the use of them is illegal worldwide by the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species and the rhino trade has been prohibited since 1977.

MacPherson recently starred in Ashton Kutcher's short-lived drama series The Beautiful Life with Mischa Barton and currently hosts the sixth season of modeling reality series Britain's Next Top Model, which premiered on Monday.

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