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Food Network Agrees to Stop Featuring Shark Meat In Response to Petition

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Change.org has announced that less than ten days after their petition asking Food Network to stop using shark meat as an ingredient, the network has agreed.

The petition created by Change.org member Jessica Belsky of California states “sadly, according to the International Union for the Conservation of Nature, as many as one-third of all shark species are threatened with extinction or are close to becoming threatened. Because shark populations are in such dire straits, there’s no reason for people to be eating these threatened swimmers,” and asks signers to “tell Food Network that you want a policy stating that shark will not be featured as an ingredient on air, in the magazine, or in recipes posted on Food Network-owned Web sites.”

Today, Sarah Parsons of Change.org has shared the news of the victory for these endangered ocean inhabitants. They quote a statement from Susie Stockton of the Food Network, “As a policy, Food Network and Cooking Channel do not incorporate or showcase recipes that involve animals on endangered species list or the Monterey Bay Aquarium Seafood Watch list, with the recent addition of sharks to those watch-lists, we will make sure that future content does not highlight shark as an ingredient. We understand there are many species with sustainability concerns, and we make efforts to stay informed and pass that information onto our audience.”

Susie Stockton of Food Network Kitchens said of the decision to stop using shark meat, “As a policy, Food Network and Cooking Channel do not incorporate or showcase recipes that involve animals on endangered species list or the Monterey Bay Aquarium Seafood Watch list, with the recent addition of sharks to those watch-lists, we will make sure that future content does not highlight shark as an ingredient. We understand there are many species with sustainability concerns, and we make efforts to stay informed and pass that information onto our audience.”

Over 30,000 people signed their name for sharks! Change.org has emphasized that while this petition has been successful, it is important for people to continue to speak up for sharks, as some populations “have declined by as much as 90% in recent years.” “If you’d like to help conserve sharks, you can also take action on other campaigns hosted on Change.org. Add your name to petitions to get a ban on the sale of shark in California and Toronto and pressure New York City’s Golden Unicorn restaurant to take shark fin soup off its menu.”

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