Shangri-La stops serving shark fin

KUALA LUMPUR: Starting today, Shangri-La Hotels and Resorts will cease serving shark fin in all its restaurants.

The hotel group will also decline orders for shark fin on the menu for banquets.

Shangri-La KL area director of communications Rosemarie Wee said several of Shangri-La’s hotels had already taken shark fin off their menus since December 2010.

“Now, all 72 of our hotels have made this commitment to save the sharks,” Wee said.

“The process was gradual as we had to make sure the logistics were in place and we could reduce and eliminate stock. Sustainability has always been at the forefront of our corporate social responsibility efforts.

“Shark fin has been a traditional staple at dinners and weddings, but the younger generation is not keen on consuming it any more.

“In fact, there have been requests not to have shark fin on the menu. In the last few years, demand for shark fin has dropped,” she said.

However, Wee said banquet bookings that included shark fin made before today would be honoured.

Shangri-La will also phase out bluefin tuna and Chilean sea bass in all its operated restaurants within this year. The hotel chain will introduce alternatives to shark fin, such as bamboo fungus, lily bulbs, American ginseng, snow fungus, sea whelks and shimeiji mushrooms.

Shangri-La’s Sustainable Seafood Policy is part of its “Sanctuary, Shangri-La’s Care for Nature” project, an initiative for consistency in biodiversity, conservation and habitat protection across all its resorts.

It includes the development of marine sanctuaries for the protection of reefs and marine life.

Studies have shown that the number of certain species of sharks has been reduced by 95% since the 1970s due to indiscriminate slaughter.

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