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Hawaii Becomes First U.S. State to Ban Shark Fin

No Shark Fin Soup For You! Hawaii Bans Shark Fin

Hawaii is still the land of poke and poi, but come 2011, don't expect to find shark fin. On Friday, governor Linda Lingle passed a bill prohibiting the possession, sale, or distribution of shark fins come July 1, 2011, making Hawaii the first U.S. state to ban the commodity. Shark fin is considered a delicacy in certain Asian countries, particularly in Chinese cuisine, where it's been served in opulent dishes since the Ming Dynasty.
The practice of shark finning has long been the subject of animal rights activists, who cite that sharks are being killed for their fins at a shocking rate of 89 million per year, disrupting the ocean habitat. I'm torn on this issue. On the one hand, I understand the delicacy's environmental repercussions; on the other, I believe such laws are unlikely to reform Asian palates. Where do you stand? Do you see other states following suit?

Source: Flickr User avlxyz

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