Singapore supermarket to stop selling shark fin

Jan 06, 2012
File photo showing a campaign in Singapore against the killing of sharks for their fins, which are largely used for shark fin soup. Singapore's largest supermarket chain will stop selling shark fin products from April after an inflammatory comment by one of its suppliers triggered widespread calls for a boycott.

Singapore's largest supermarket chain will stop selling shark fin products from April after an inflammatory comment by one of its suppliers triggered calls for a boycott from activists and the public.

NTUC FairPrice -- a cooperative run by the city-state's national trades union -- made the announcement on Thursday after receiving hundreds of complaints.

The uproar was sparked by one of the chain's suppliers which made the comment "Screw the divers!" in an online promotional message for a new product to be launched at FairPrice outlets during the upcoming Lunar New Year.

The comment, apparently directed at divers campaigning against the shark fin trade, went viral on Facebook and Twitter.

Many of the reactions advocated a boycott of the supplier and FairPrice.

In a statement, FairPrice chief executive Seah Kian Peng said the chain was ceasing sales of shark fin products by the end of March.

"This will be the last Chinese New Year in which customers can buy shark fin products at all our stores," said Seah.

Jennifer Lee, founder of Project Fin, a local group campaigning to reduce shark fin consumption, welcomed the supermarket chain's decision.

"It is encouraging to see FairPrice respond promptly to the public reaction. They can progress further by selling only sustainable food," she said.

Online commentators were also quick to praise the decision.

"Thank you for putting sharks and the health of your customers before profit!," wrote "Shannon Veganista" on FairPrice's Facebook page.

Shark fin remains a sought-after delicacy in the affluent Southeast Asian state, where it is largely served at Chinese festive celebrations and wedding receptions.

According to WWF, Singapore is the second-largest shark fin trading centre after Hong Kong.

WWF-Hong Kong says the consumption of shark fins is a driving factor behind the threat to , with more than 180 species considered threatened in 2010 compared to only 15 in 1996.

In September last year, Cold Storage became the first supermarket chain in Singapore to stop shark fin sales as part of a collaboration with WWF, local media reported.

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User comments : 5

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4.8 / 5 (4) Jan 06, 2012
I've never eaten shark fins - greedy humans, for those who cannot embrace the conservationists ideas, hope you choke with your shark fins soup - less of you, better world... As for the Singapore supermarket's decision - well done.
3.5 / 5 (2) Jan 06, 2012
how much mercury ppm does shark fin have?
1.7 / 5 (3) Jan 06, 2012
What do these fruit cakes want? I already had to give up polar bear and lion, what else is there to eat if I'm going to keep up with my EXTREME diet? Obviously fads are much more important that the survival of one trivial species. And the profits of shark fisheries matter so much more than the ecology of our measly oceans. Who cares if the planet ends up a barren desert wasteland, as long as someone got rich and did a lot of cool shit right?
2.9 / 5 (7) Jan 06, 2012
The Chinese would eat us if they thought it would give them an erection.
2.7 / 5 (3) Jan 07, 2012
The Chinese would eat us if they thought it would give them an erection.

:D made my day :D