Each year, 100 MILLION sharks are massacred for their fins. More often than not, the finning takes place at sea. The fins and tail are chopped off and the trunk is thrown overboard and the animal is left to drown.
In some areas, shark populations have dropped by as much as 90%.
1/3 of ALL shark species are facing extinction, many within our life time.
Sharks play a critical role in maintaining the fragile balance in our worlds oceans.
The fins do not add flavour to the soup, which is a type of chicken broth. Neither do they hold any nutritional value. The fins are added to provide texture.
We the undersigned respectfully request that you stop serving shark-fin soup in your establishment and remove the said item from your menu's.
It is estimated that around 100 million sharks are killed each year, primarily for their fins to make shark-fin soup. They are caught (often illegally) by long-lines, sport fishermen and for the barbaric practice of finning.
Hooked sharks are hauled onto boats and their fins are sliced off while they are still alive. These helpless animals are then thrown back into the ocean where, unable to swim without their fins, they sink to the bottom and drown in an horrific and agonizing death.
Shark populations have dropped by as much as 90% in recent years. They are being wiped out faster than they can reproduce. 1/3rd of all shark species are facing extinction, many within our life time. This is threatening the stability of marine ecosystems around the world. Sharks play a critical role in maintaining a delicate balance in these ecosystems, the health of the planet and ultimately the survival of mankind.
It has been found that shark fins, meat and by-products all contain high levels of mercury. This has been known to cause cardiovascular problems as well as being responsible for birth defects. Other toxins found include (but are not limited to) arsenic, cadmium, manganese and copper.
The Republic of Guam has banned the practice. Hawaii has banned the possession, sale and distribution of fins. California has banned the practice and sale. Malaysia and Toronto are in the process of banning. Disney World Hong Kong have taken it off the menu. The University of Hong Kong has banned fins on campus and Barack Obama has recently signed the Shark Protection Act.
While we understand and respect cultural traditions, we are sure you will agree that in light of the above it would be better to put aside these traditions for the greater good of the environment.
With Southern Africa being vulnerable to shark finning, restaurants such as yourselves would do well to stop serving the product. Not only will you be doing the environment a favour, but you will be able to capitalize on taking a stance against the practice and thus considerably bolster good will in the eyes of the broader community.