In what may be the best news this Thanksgiving, the European Parliament has voted, with an overwhelming majority, to force all EU registered vessels to land shark carcasses whole, rather than just the fin. The EU, one of the largest exporters of shark fins to Asia, banned finning in 2003, but this legislation still allowed companies with freezer vessels to apply for “special fishing permits”. These allowed them to continue to land fins separately from the bodies and the issuing of these permits became standard practice. Today, the Members of the European Parliament (MEPs) voted 566 for to 47 against to close this legal loophole, effectively ending the legal trade of shark fin by EU vessels.
Thanksgiving 2012 is a great day for sharks! Now there really is a great result to celebrate. Happy Thanksgiving to the Wetpixel community.