Patt Morrison for March 11, 2010

Sushi lovers groan, ecologists rejoice: Trade ban on bluefin tuna on the horizon?

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Possible blue fin tuna ban

It’s one of the most prized fish in the ocean, both as a sushi delicacy and for its role in balancing the ocean ecology. The blue fin tuna is a big, beautiful fish that can grow up to 1,000 pounds and live as long as 30 years—and it is also worth hundreds of dollars per pound to sushi chefs across the world, and as a result the blue fin tuna has been heavily fished. At an upcoming international convention on ocean ecology and trade the United States will propose a global ban on the trade of blue fin tuna as a way to preserve the species. What could lead to a rebirth in wild blue fin tuna could prove to be tragic for sushi chefs and consumers with a taste for blue fin. Will the U.S. be successful in such a sweeping step, and would you sacrifice a delicious slice of blue fin sashimi in order to save the species?


Susan Lieberman, director of international policy for the Pew Environment Group

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