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Take shark fin off official menus

03-05-2012 10:36 BJT

Ban would help save species from extinction

BEIJING - A National People's Congress deputy has called on the central government to take shark fin off the menu at official banquets to help save the lives of up to 100 millions sharks slaughtered every year.

A restaurant owner shows raw shark fin served in his restaurant in Taiyuan, Shanxi province, on Dec 29, 2011. He declared on Dec 27 on his micro blog that he would cease serving shark fin in his restaurant. And due to his huge stock of shark fin, he is inviting customers to try it for free. [Zhang Yun / China News Service]

"I suggest the central government bans the consumption of shark fin at banquets at all levels, as part of efforts to save the species from extinction," said Guo Guangchang, an NPC deputy from Shanghai and chairman of Fosun International Ltd, one of China's largest conglomerates.

The campaign was initiated last year by basketball legend Yao Ming, who said "there is no reasonable explanation for the cruelty".

Many restaurants and hotels have already followed suit and taken shark fin off their menus.

Hong Kong and Shanghai Hotels, which owns The Peninsula Hotels, has stopped serving the dish since Jan 1, saying its decision was made "in recognition of the threat facing the global shark population".


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