Letter to the SCMP Editor: Correct fishing, not food, is issue. 4 March 2011
Correct fishing, not food, is issue
I refer to the letter by Claire Garner of the HK Shark Foundation (‘Group does not focus on fins’, February 24) in reply to my letter (‘Fins a side issue in shark fishing’, February 11). She confirmed the HK Shark Foundation is opposed to any shark products being used by people.
She considers it irrelevant that shark meat rather than shark fin drives most shark fisheries, despite this meaning that the fin campaign, which stings Chinese people nationally and internationally, may achieve little in terms of improving the sustainability of shark fisheries. Others can decide whether her argument is logical.
Ms Garner also claims that shark fisheries must be unsustainable because tens of millions are harvested annually. Yet there are hundreds of billions of bony fish harvested annually, everything from anchovies to tuna, so should we assume all fisheries are unsustainable? Furthermore, 57 species of bony fish have already become extinct, whereas not one shark species is extinct.
The purpose of the shark fin campaign should be to educate people about the need for sustainable fishing, not to castigate one group of people for sustaining a traditional cuisine.
Ricky Leung, Western District, Hong Kong
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