Seafood banquets put tropical reef fish at risk

Fabinyi, Michael (2014) Seafood banquets put tropical reef fish at risk. China Dialogue, 30 October 2014.

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[Extract] Seafood has a special role in China's luxury dining scene. Holding a big seafood banquet is a way of cementing social ties with important partners in a professional context; people in high level positions in government or the private sector often attend several banquets a week as part of their work obligations. During these banquets hosts are expected to impress their guests by serving high-status foods. Important seafood dishes often served at banquets include: lobster, giant geoduck clams, crabs and abalone, shark fin, sea cucumbers, and reef fish.

As China's middle class expands and incomes rise, the country's per capita consumption of seafood is increasing. Banquets typically feature exotic imported seafood. However, consumption patterns are shifting – less shark fin is being consumed following a high profile anti-cruelty campaign combined with a government crackdown on expense account dining.

Other species are moving towards the front line of endangerment, especially colourful tropical reef fish. The "live reef fish for food trade" is a major fishery industry in Asia Pacific: major source countries include Indonesia and the Philippines, and most exports go to Hong Kong and China.

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Date Deposited: 01 Sep 2015 02:36
FoR Codes: 16 STUDIES IN HUMAN SOCIETY > 1601 Anthropology > 160101 Anthropology of Development @ 50%
05 ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCES > 0502 Environmental Science and Management > 050202 Conservation and Biodiversity @ 50%
SEO Codes: 97 EXPANDING KNOWLEDGE > 970116 Expanding Knowledge through Studies of Human Society @ 100%
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