BANGKOK – As part of global Earth Day initiatives, Thai celebrities, students, conservationists, and leading hospitality industry representatives gathered to launch a Blue List promoting hotels in Thailand that are 100 per cent shark fin free.
“Many hotels are taking shark fin off their menus out of concern for endangered shark populations threatened by overfishing. They should be commended for this important action to protect sharks and the marine environment,” said Jirayu Ekkul, Fin Free Thailand spokesperson and Marine Conservation Campaign Director for Love Wildlife Foundation.
Featuring 23 leading luxury hotels, the Fin Free Thailand Blue List was announced on Earth Day (April 22nd) at the International School Bangkok to cheers from hundreds of students. The full list of hotels is provided below.
“Given the scientific evidence on drastic decline of shark population, we believe that it is our responsibility, as Asia’s oldest hotel company, to no longer serve shark fin at any of our hotels. We can’t let sharks disappear to the point where you, your children and grandchildren can only see them in a museum,” said Ms Katja Henke, General Manager of The Peninsula Bangkok, addressing students.
Students also spoke up at the launch. “I’m not a diver or environmental activist, but I know what’s being done to sharks is wrong and unsustainable,” said ISB seventh grader Pavin Sethbhakdi. “I’ve told my family, including my grandparents, we need to say no to shark fin soup.”
Fin Free Thailand encourages all hotels to join the Blue List and is offering support, including information on the health risks and alternative sustainable menu options, to those that need help phasing shark fin soup out.
“We’ve found that some hotels not openly offering or promoting shark fin soup in the name of conservation, are still serving hundreds of bowls at request for business and wedding banquets,” noted Jirayu.
“We want them to be honest with the public and make a real commitment to marine conservation by completely banning shark fin. The Fin Free Blue List highlights hotels making a 100 per cent commitment to protect sharks by not serving shark fin at all.”
Fin Free Thailand is a new national campaign encouraging hotels and restaurants to stop serving shark fin, in order to protect endangered sharks, marine ecosystems, and people’s health.
It also works to inform consumers of the serious health and environmental risks of eating shark fin, encouraging them to only patronize Fin Free establishments.
Part of a global movement, Fin Free Thailand and the Blue List is initiated by FREELAND Foundation, Love Wildlife Foundation, Change.org Thailand, with support from Thai citizens, schools, businesses, and the United States Agency for International Development (USAID).
Source: The Phuket News