Some friends on the Shark-L listserv have started a petition to hopefully sway Alibaba.com into ceasing the sale of shark products, the fins from the sharks obtained in a cruel, non-sustainable (and often illegal) manner. The petition can be found here, and its statement is as follows;
Alibaba.com is one of the largest online traders of seafood and other products, especially shark fin – without regards to source or sustainability. The practice of shark finning, where a shark is captured, the fins removed, often while the shark is still living and the body discarded, is a brutal practice that is decimating shark populations worldwide. This lucrative market for shark fin is creating huge incentives for poor nations- as represented by scores of businesses on Alibaba.com- to remove the ocean’s shark populations. Without any control, it is likely that endangered and threatened shark species are traded in great volume at great profit. As a web based business gateway, Alibaba.com is collusive and partner to this criminal and wasteful practice.
Please, take a moment and sign this important document. Sharks, while familiar, are still largely misunderstood and we have no idea how many there are left. How can harvests of these animals continue when we don’t even understand the damage we’re doing? The practice of finning is akin to someone lopping off all your limbs and leaving you to bleed to death, without aid, and is unconscionable. There is no excuse for a seller like Alibaba.com to keep ignoring where their good are coming from, so please add your voice to this important issue.