01/24/22 Hundreds of Sharks are Killed Every Minute for Shark Fin Soup!

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Only one week left to sign a petition for the shark fin trade ban in the EU

- Live sharks are finned and discarded into the ocean to bleed to death – let’s prevent that by signing the petition

Over the last 50 years, more than 70% of sharks have been erased from the face of the earth. Most often they are killed as bycatch during fishing or for their flesh and fins which, in Asia, are used as delicacies, medicine or aphrodisiac. Once caught, live sharks are finned and the rest is discarded into the sea where they die of shock or drowning. Every year more than 100 million sharks meet this fate and all this is only for the shark fin soup offered in restaurants around the world.

For this reason, the European Citizens’ Initiative “Stop Finning – Stop the Trade” was launched, collecting signatures among EU citizens at https://eci.ec.europa.eu/012/public with the end of January as the closing date. The aim of the Initiative and the petition, set up by the Sea Shepherd action ocean conservation association among others, is to completely end fin trade in the EU, including the import, export and transit of fins other than if naturally attached to the animal’s body!

Although the removal of fins on board EU vessels and in EU waters is prohibited and sharks must be landed with their fins naturally attached, the EU is among the biggest exporters of shark fins and a major transit hub for the global fin trade. Namely, due to scarce inspections at sea, fins are still being illegally retained, transshipped or landed in the EU.

Over the past 60 years, the global population of the Oceanic Whitetip Shark has been reduced by a frightening 98% due to their fins. Some Asian countries, such as China and Taiwan, have leased ports in Central America exclusively for finning while fully aware that the fishery controls and monitoring are either weak or non-existing in those countries, as is the case with Guatemala and Costa Rica. The area of the Galapagos Marine Reserve is particularly endangered.

“Sharks have lived in oceans for over 400 million years and it is our responsibility to protect them. We ask everyone to take half a minute of their time and stand up for these incredible ocean creatures” Animal Friends Croatia urge. They also invoke research from 2006 which warned that fishing would completely collapse because ocean life would die out by 2048 if we do not significantly change our stance towards ocean animal and plant species living in interdependent eco-systems.

“It is incredible that the ancient creatures that have been swimming in oceans for as many as 423 million years are threatened with extinction! They have been on this planet longer than trees! They have survived as many as four mass extinctions, but they will not survive human greed, avarice and arrogance if we do not act now. We are calling to everyone to sign the petition, to remove ocean creatures from their plates and to think of the following: as 70% of the Earth is made out of water, once we kill off our oceans, we will kill off the Earth as well. Instead of eating fish, try vegan sushi, mushroom or chickpea stew, which, with some added healthy algae, incredibly recreates the flavor of the sea.”

More information on the need to respect our oceans and all ocean life can be found at the petition link.

Translated by: Vlatka Nercessian

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