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Shark Fin Ban Begins Today

Choo Yut Shing

Shark fins

Choo Yut Shing

Cultural delicacy or inhumane treatment of animals? No matter what your position on shark fin soup, the fact remains it’s no longer legal in California. That pleases Jennifer Fearing, California Director of the Humane Society.

“Sharks need their fins and we don’t,” she says. 

Fearing doesn’t know exactly how many people eat shark fin soup. But she says her work on the ban showed the number was significant. “It was clear that California was the largest market for sharks outside of Asia,” she says.

But Pius Lee with San Francisco’s Chinatown Neighborhood Association says the ban doesn’t make sense because it outlaws one part of the fish but not the rest.

“Starting July 1st no one can buy or possess shark fin in California,” he says. “But you can buy shark meat and other parts of the fish.”

Lee says the ban will amount to $40 million in lost business. He and other opponents are challenging the ban in federal court.

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Katie Orr

State Government Reporter

Katie Orr covers everything from the Governor to state agencies. She received her Masters in Political Science from San Diego State University. In her spare time Katie enjoys wine tasting and shopping, though she tries not to combine the two.   Read Full Bio