Ivory comes from elephant tusk and hippopotamus teeth. Ivory is used in decorative sculptures due to its color and durability. The demand for ivory lead to poachers hunting these endangered animals.
Ivory trade has been outlawed due to its effect on endangered wildlife. In California, The selling of ivory was outlawed in July of 2016.
Does the lucrative nature of illegal merchandise cause the demand for it to increase? The store in La Jolla had over 200 pieces of ivory available. there must have been significant enough of a market to warrant such a large inventory.