I just thought that I would share an editorial that was posted to the Calgary Herald’s website yesterday about the motion that I have coming to council on Monday to ask for a bylaw banning the possession, distribution and sale of shark fins in the city of Calgary.
Editorial: A soup in bad taste
We’re generally opposed to telling retailers and restaurants what they can and cannot sell, but we’re firmly on side with Ald. Brian Pincott in his effort to ban the sale of shark fin soup in the city.
It’s a “brutal and horrible practice,” says Pincott. “I personally believe this to be a crisis in our oceans.”
Even the government of China has joined the growing tide against the Asian delicacy, promising the dish won’t be served at state banquets within three years. We’re expecting more decisive action in Calgary, where the matter will be debated Monday at city council.
It’s estimated that between 26 million and 73 million sharks are killed annually for their fins, putting their numbers at risk. The fish are usually tossed back into the water alive, where they suffocate or are eaten by other predators, to save room on the boat. The fins, sadly, are among the most valuable seafood product in the world, fetching as much as $20,000 each.
A Calgary ban — which would affect only a handful of eateries in the city — would follow prohibitions in some Canadian cities and five U.S. states.
Pincott has been working with Shark Fin Free Calgary, which on Thursday afternoon had collected 8,238 names on its petition, with the goal of reaching the 10,000 mark. We say it’s high time to take this repugnant dish off the menu.