In Hong Kong, 26 tons of protected shark fins were seized: they belonged to 38,000 different specimens
The announcement was made by the Hong Kong Department of Customs and Excise and was reported by the English-language newspaper SCMP, South China Morning Post, on May 6. For customs inspection, two containers were opened each containing 13 tons of shark fins from Ecuador. The experts, evaluating the shape of the fins, came to the conclusion that they are two species prohibited for import into the Asian country, as they are considered protected.
Customs officials had become suspicious because of writings in Spanish that signaled the presence inside of dried fish coming from the South American country and destined for the same local logistics company. On April 28, they then opened the first container and May 4 of the second, each finding over 300 nylon bags full of shark fins.
The discovery inevitably led to the seizure of 26 tons of fins belonging to about 38,500 sharks , 90% of which are considered to be at risk. Ken Chan Hon-ki , responsible for the protection of endangered species and part of the Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Conservation, has calculated that the fins come from about 31,000 pelagic thresher sharks and 7,500 silk sharks , species considered protected in the country. Asian.
In fact, the pelagic thresher shark or Alopias pelagicus has been defined by the world organization IUCN, International Union for the Conservation of Nature, based in Geneva, an “endangered” species, that is ” endangered “, while the shark silk or Carcharhinus falciformis is considered ” vulnerable “.
The two games have an enormous commercial value, calculated at around 8,600,000 Hong Kong dollars, which corresponds to around 1 million euros . It is believed that the goods were intended for local consumption , to be sold to grocery stores and restaurants and then resold to consumers by them. According to a survey carried out in 2018, in recent years in Hong Kong 7 out of 10 inhabitants have eaten shark fin soup at weddings, company or family celebrations because it is considered a good omen and aphrodisiac.