New DNA Study Reveals Fins Of Endangered Shark In U.S. Soups
This study examined 51 samples of shark fin soup taken in 14 U.S. cities and conducted DNA tests to determine the type of shark contained in the soup. The study found that 32 of those samples contained sharks that are listed as at-risk for extinction by the IUCN.
Only five U.S. states have banned the sale of shark fins. The are legal for sale in the rest of the U.S., though the price of shark fins soup runs high–up to $100 a bowl. Researchers took 51 samples of shark fin soup from 14 U.S. cities. In all 32 (67%) contained sharks that are listed as at-risk by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN).
Even though IUCN lists these sharks as at-risk,”[n]one of the species found in the soups are on the United States Endangered Species List or are protected by the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species, commonly referred to as CITES. ‘It’s all perfectly legal,’ Dr Chapman said. (The American list does not include any shark species; under the international convention, countries can agree voluntary to refrain from trading in specific species from certain places.)”
A radio interview with the study authors can be found here.