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6.2 FINS


Shark fins are one of the most expensive fish products in the world. They are used to prepare shark fin soup and have a traditional and virtually exclusive market among Chinese ethnic groups established in different parts of the world, but little elsewhere. Thus, domestic sales in primary producing countries, such as India, Indonesia, Japan and the USA, are negligible. Their production is almost totally exported to major markets, especially Hong Kong and Singapore, where shark fins fetch very good prices.

The use of shark fins as food has been known in China for centuries. It was reported in writings of the Ming Dynasty (1368-1644). The quest to locate exotic and health promoting food by emperors and noblemen was met by the use of shark fins. As only a small quantity can be obtained from a large fish, fins were noble and precious, fit for the tables of emperors. Throughout the ages the Chinese have considered shark fin one of the eight treasured foods from the sea. By the Qing Dynasty (1644-1911) shark fins had become a traditional part of formal banquets. Today fins are still served at dinner parties to express the host's respect for his guests, usually at weddings and other important functions. October-February is the period of highest consumption as it is the customary season for weddings and other parties, with a peak during the parties for Chinese New Year. Business in July and August is slack as these two months are considered inauspicious by the Chinese[60].

The benefits of shark fin as documented by old Chinese medical books include rejuvenation, appetite enhancement, nourishing to blood, beneficial to vital energy, kidneys, lungs, bones and many other parts of the body. The chemical composition per 100 grams of dried shark fin needles is as follows:

Table 21 Chemical composition of dried shark fins

Water

14.0

g

Protein*

83.5

g

Fat

0.3

g

Carbohydrate

0.0

g

Ash

2.2

g

Calcium

146.0

mg

Phosphorus

194.0

mg

Iron

15.2

mg

Food energy

337

kcal

* The protein of shark fin is deficient in the essential amino acid Tryptophan.
Source: Food composition tables, People's health publication, Beijing

6.2.1 Characteristics[61]

Most species of sharks have at least two sets of median fins situated along the central line of the body. There are one or two dorsal fins on the top, a caudal fin, which is the tail, and an anal fin located at the underside behind the anus. Most sharks have triangular dorsal fins. There are usually two, the first being generally larger than the second, but in some species there is only one. The caudal fin is asymmetrical with the vertebral column extending into the upper lobe. The anal fin is not present in all species. Its absence or presence is important in shark classification. They also have two sets of paired fins on the underside of the body. These are the pectoral fins just behind and, in some cases, partly below the gill slits and the pelvic fins located at about the midpoint of the underside of the body. As with all the fins in sharks, the pectoral fins cannot be folded back and are consequently erect all the time.

A shark fin has very little muscle tissue. There is a membrane, and in some cases a fatty layer under the skin, covering a bundle of collagen fibres spread out like a fan. In most fins these fibres are supported by a cartilaginous platelet in the centre. The cartilaginous platelet is absent in the caudal fin.

Sharks do not have scales. The skin of the fins, like that of the rest of the shark’s body, is covered with large numbers of usually very small thorn-like structures or denticles. These make shark skin feel like sandpaper.

The collagen fibres of the fin are rounded at the base, tapering to fine points at their extremities, giving the appearance of needles. These soft/collagen elasten fibres are commonly known as fin needles. Separately or joined as a bundle, the fin needles are used in soup making and other traditional Chinese dishes. Shark fin soup is usually prepared by adding other ingredients for taste, such as chicken, crab or abalone.

Fins are the most valuable part of the shark and are easily one of the most costly food items in the world. The preparation of shark fins does not require any elaborate treatment but the greatest care must be taken in their removal and processing as fins that are not properly dried or trimmed cannot be accepted as first grade fins and their value is reduced. Lovers of shark fin soup are meticulous about the appearance and quality of the cured product so the buyers are extremely quality-conscious. Certain countries, such as Japan, Australia, Spain, Mexico and others in the Americas, are considered able to produce better quality shark fins. They are usually those with a developed fishery having adequate infrastructure and post harvest technology. This enables the fins to be kept fresh, clean and unsalted before drying. The countries around the Indian Ocean are more traditional in their shark fin processing methods and lack infrastructure. Fishermen and processors in these countries are more inclined to use salt for preservation. This results in an inferior product with high moisture content. These countries are also resistant to change with a philosophy that as long as the products sell there is no reason to change. An exception in this group, according to an importer, is Sri Lanka, which adheres to tradition yet is able to produce a good product[62].

6.2.2 Products

Shark fins are processed and marketed in many forms. The following are the most important[63]:

Fins are usually imported in the dried form, complete with denticles and cartilaginous platelets and are further processed by traders to produce the various processed forms.

6.2.3 Grading

Shark fins are mainly graded by type, size, as black or white and other factors such as moisture content, smell and the cut.

The size of a fin is measured either on the length of the base of the fin or the distance between the centre of the base and the tip of the fin. Depending on the size, fins are graded as extra large (40 cm and above), large (30-40 cm), medium (20-30 cm), small (10-20 cm), very small (4-10 cm) and mixed or assorted. This last grade also includes ventral and anal fins.

The typical classification is in white and black groups. Some traders say that this is a description of the colour of the fins (black: e.g. Carcharhinus species, mako and blue sharks; white: e.g sandbar and hammerheads), others that it is a classification by their yield and taste and a third version maintains that shark fins of the white group belong to sharks from shallow waters while the black belong to sharks from deeper waters. The former have a set of three fins, two dorsal and a caudal fin, whereas the latter have a set of four, a pair of pectorals, a dorsal and a caudal fin. All agreed however that fins of the white group give higher percentage of fin needles and a better flavour. These are more sought after and thus command higher prices. Fins from the black group are inferior in both percentage yield and flavour. This classification is typically used but there are also differences in opinion. For instance, the fins of tiger sharks are considered to be white by one Indian authority and black by another.

Shark fins can also be graded according to species. Even if it is rather difficult to identify the species from dried fins, with a few exceptions, larger traders of shark fin know exactly what they are dealing with. They can tell by looking at a raw fin its position on the shark, its trade name and its country of origin. The identification of species from fin needles is extremely difficult except, perhaps, for some large fin needles.

The quality and quantity of fin needles within a shark varies widely. Thus, not all fins of a shark are of the same commercial value. The most valuable are the first dorsal fin, the pair of pectoral fins and the lower part of the tail, as can be seen in the following figure.

Figure 47 Relative commercial value of shark fins

Source: SUBASINGHE S., “Shark fin, sea cucumber and jelly fish. A processor’s guide”, INFOFISH Technical Handbook 6.

Traditionally shark fins are traded as fin sets and preference is for complete sets from the same shark than for an assorted mixture. According to Kreuzer and Ahmed[65], the complete set consists of two pectoral fins, the first (rarely the second) dorsal fin and the lower lobe of the caudal (tail) fin. The proportion of fins by quantity should normally be of around 50% for pectoral fins, 25% for dorsal fins and 25% for caudal fins.

Fins from sharks under 5 feet in length and the very small anal, ventral and second dorsal fins have a low commercial value and are sold as mixed fins or fin nets after processing. The upper lobe of the tail of all sharks has also very little commercial value.

According to Chen[66], importers purchase shark fin in various different ways, depending very much on how the suppliers sort the fins. Some sort the fins into three categories as follows:

Others sell in 1-2 tonne lots, mixing species and sizes. Using this method, importers report losses of 2-3kg of choice fins of choice species per lot.

6.2.4 Preferred species

According to Kreuzer and Ahmed[67], fins from all sharks of over 1.5m in length are commercially valuable, except the fins from the nurse shark (Ginglymostoma cirratum) and the pectoral fins of the saw shark (Pristiphorus nudipinnis). Even if there are species whose fins are generally considered excellent, preferences for fins of particular species can change from one country or one person to another. The fins of the same species can be highly appreciated by some people and refused by others. There are fins which are popular due to their high percentage yield of fin needles and their needle size, texture and appearance. The fins from some other species, such as blue shark, are popular because they are readily available at comparatively low prices even if they are not considered of high quality. The preferred species for fins in major markets are shown below but this scheme must not be considered as a static worldwide reality but only a tendency.

FIRST CHOICE

Blue shark
Dusky shark
Giant guitarfish
Hammerhead
Mako shark
Oceanic whitetip shark
Sandbar shark

SECOND CHOICE

Blacktip reef shark
Blacktip shark
Great white shark
Lemon shark
Requiem sharks
Smalltooth sandtiger shark
Spadenose shark
Thresher shark
Tiger shark
Tope shark
Scalloped hammerhead

THIRD CHOICE

Basking shark
Picked dogfish
Whale shark

6.2.5 Pricing

The commercial value of the fin depends on various factors, the principal ones being[68]:

- The type of fin, e.g. the lower lobe of the caudal fin has no cartilaginous platelet, therefore, compared to other types of fins, this has the highest percentage yield of fin needles. The upper lobe of most species does not yield fin needles so, after removal of the denticles, the skin is dried and sold as fish lips. The variations in sizes of fin needles are vast. Generally, the larger the fin, the longer and thicker are the fin needles. The caudal fin by comparison is the largest fin of the fish, therefore yields the thickest and longest fin needles, followed by the first dorsal fin and then the pair of pectoral fins. The fin needles from the second dorsal fin, the pair of ventral fins and anal fin are considered to be of much lower quality.

- The species, e.g. the whole caudal fin of the shovel Nose Ray yields fin needles from both the lower and upper lobe. The fin needles of Basking shark are reputed to be as thick as a chopstick while fin needles from some fins are finer than hair.

- The processing methods employed, e.g. whether the fin is clean cut or has shark meat attached, whether it is light and dry or been salted and thus has a high moisture content. The trade in general is weary of ageing fins. In such cases, certain parts of the fin lose their natural elastic property and acquire a hard bony structure, which is not palatable. Unfortunately, ageing in the fin is not easily detected when dry, i.e. at time of purchase. When the ageing becomes visible after rehydration it has to be discarded. It is reported that this phenomenon is more common in species inhabiting tropical waters, as the environment makes the sharks age faster[69].

Worldwide, prices of shark fins increased remarkably in the late 1980s and 1990s, reflecting the substantial growth in demand. This increase is linked to the opening of the Chinese market together with the reduction of tariffs and the relaxing of political pressure which discouraged the consumption of this product in the past when it was considered too luxurious for domestic consumption.

Table 22 lists prices for shark fins by selected species, product forms and countries in the period January-April 1999.

Table 22 Shark fin prices in US$/kg, Asia

Product form and grading

Price

Price reference and area

Origin

Black shark fins, DVP


Singapore, c&f

India

30-40 cm

45.00



20-30 cm

32.50



10-20 cm

27.00



Black, shark fins, and tails, 10-20 cm

30.00



Black shark fins, tube




30 cm

80.00



20-30 cm

47.00



10-20 cm

30.70



Black tails




20 cm and up

42.00



10-20 cm

35.00



Tiger shark fins, tails, 20 cm and up

18.00



White shark fins and tails

37.00



White heera shark fins/tails




20-30 cm

23.00



50 cm up

13.00



Yellow shark fin, rays, 20 cm up

43.00



Shark fin rays, DVP




10-20 cm

45.00



Below 10 cm

35.00



Shark fin rays, mixed

30.00



Shark fins, tails (processed), 4.5 inch up

80.00


Indonesia

White shark fins, straight cut in full set

55.00



Blue shark fins, dorsal, pectoral, tails

30.00



Black shark fins, DVP



China

30 inch and up

45.00



20-30 inch

32.50



10-20 inch

27.00



White shark fins, dorsal/pectoral, tails

86.00


Australia

Black shark fins, dorsal, pectoral, tails

45.00


South Pacific

Table 22 Shark fin prices in US$/kg, Asia (continued)

Product form and grading

Price

Price reference and area

Origin

Ocean white, half moon cut in full set

42.00

Singapore, Wholesale


Blue shark fins, half moon cut in full set

35.00



Mako shark, half moon cut in full set

16.00



Black shark fins, tails


Hong Kong, c&f

India

20-30 cm

65.00



10-20 cm

30.00



Black shark fins, DVP




40 cm above

48.00



30-40 cm

45.00



20-30 cm

32.00



10-20 cm

18.00



White shark fins and tails

40.00



White shark fins, pulli, 30 cm and up

51.00



White heera shark fins, tails




20 cm/up

19.00



10-20 cm

10.00



White shark fins, DVP & tails, 20 cm and up

64.00



Tiger, shark fins/tails, 20 cm/up

18.00



Yellow shark fins/tails

84.00



Queen shark fins




20 cm/up

14.00



10-20 cm

11.00



Shark fin rays, mixed

25.00



Queen shark fins/tails


Far East/Southeast Asia, c&f


20 cm up

14.00



10-20 cm

11.00



Yellow shark fins, 20-30 inch

22.00



White vichide and tail20 cm and up

65.00



Shark fins, tails




10-20 cm

55.00



Below 10 cm

43.00



Source: INFOFISH Trade News.

6.2.6 Processing[70]

6.2.6.1 Fresh Fins

The fins should be severed from the body as soon as the fish is caught. Fins from sharks over 4-5 feet in length are used for processing. Care should be taken to minimise the amount of meat left on the fin by cutting off the fin just where the strands of fin rays start. The dorsal and pectoral fins of sharks are relatively thick at their base and have muscle tissue extending a short distance into the base of the fins. In this respect special care should be taken with the first dorsal fin which has more meat at its base. The “half-moon cut” (Fig. 2) preferred by the processors retains very little meat thus giving a more desirable end product. The “straight cut” and the irregular “crude cut” leave varying amounts of meat on the fin. If fins are not properly severed, the residual meat often imparts a bad odour and colour to the fins thus lowering product quality.

Freshly cut fins have to be cleaned well by scrubbing away any dirt or adhering extraneous matter and washing them well in fresh water or in sea water. If fins are to be traded in the fresh or wet form, cleaned fins may be stored in ice for several days with re-icing if necessary. Fins keep longer if frozen.

Figure 48 Methods of cutting fins

Source: SUBASINGHE S., “Shark fin, sea cucumber and jelly fish. A processor’s guide”, INFOFISH technical handbook 6, 1992.

Figure 49 Components of a shark fin and appearance of various product forms

Source: SUBASINGHE S., “Shark fin, sea cucumber and jelly fish. A processor’s guide”, INFOFISH technical handbook 6.

6.2.6.2 Dried Fins

The cleaned fresh fins may be sun dried on mats, trays or racks or hung from a line. Some recommend the dusting of salt on the fins, especially on the cut ends. If salt has been used on cut surfaces the excess salt on the surface has to be washed away prior to sun drying. The sun-drying process may be started on board if fishing operations are long.

When fins are sun-dried on trays or mats, they should be turned periodically to facilitate drying and to prevent scorching and curling. Fins should be kept out of the rain. They should be taken indoors at night to protect from insects and vermin and to prevent the deposition of dew. Throughout the drying process care should be taken to avoid the contamination of fins with sand and other extraneous matter. Depending on the thickness of the fin, it takes 7-14 days of sun drying to get a satisfactorily dried product with a moisture content of around 10-15%. According to codex standards, the moisture content of the final product should not exceed 18%. The properly dried fins make a characteristic sound when tapped against each other. If sun drying is not possible, a mechanical dryer set at 40°-50°C may be used. However, traders prefer sun-dried to oven-dried fins.

Common defects in dried shark fins are:

Packaging and storage: The product is packed as per the requirements of the buyer, either in cartons, wooden cases or gunny sacks. The last form of packaging is preferred as it allows the product to “breathe”. Airtight containers tend to develop a high humidity within the container, resulting in possible deterioration in quality. Generally, larger, more valuable grades are packed in 25kg bags. The mixed or lower grades are shipped in 50kg sacks.

6.2.6.3 Processed Fins

Softening: The initial stage of processing constitutes softening the fins using water. Fins are soaked for 8-10 hours. Frozen fins have to be properly thawed prior to soaking. Sun-dried fins have to be soaked for a longer period, up to 16-24 hours. After the initial soaking period the fins are further soaked, in water pre-heated to 80°-90°C, until the scales and the skin are loose or soft. The fins should not be cooked nor the water bath heated with fins inside, as this could damage the texture of the fin rays.

Descaling, skinning and removal of meat: The softened fins are transferred into a bucket of chilled water and the scales and skin are carefully removed using a wire brush. The fins are washed again in fresh water. The meat attached to the fin and the cartilaginous base plate is removed carefully and the fins washed well in running water.

Drying: Processed fins are dried in the sun on bamboo mats for 4-6 days, occasionally turning them to facilitate uniform drying and prevent curling. Excessive heat could lead to scorching and browning of the product. Alternatively, a mechanical dryer may be used for the purpose.

The processed fins at this stage retain the original shape of the fin. Processors remove varying amounts of base cartilage and cartilaginous tissue between the two layers of fin rays from the larger, more commercially valuable fins. The two layers of fin rays may also be completely separated into two bundles prior to sun drying.

6.2.6.4 Fin Needles

Processed fins may be further processed to fin needles or fin nets. Initially the processed fins are softened by soaking in water up to 12 hours. The fins are then boiled in water for a very short time, about five to ten minutes, to facilitate the removal of bundles of needles which now stand prominently as a result of expansion due to absorption of water. Boiling also facilitates the removal of the membranous sheath covering the bundles of needles. At this stage fins are transferred to chilled water and the base of fin strands kneaded and softened by hand to separate fin needles from the membrane. Any remaining membrane tissue is removed from the fin needles. The fin needles may be removed in the wet form as wet fin needles or may be further processed to fin nets.

6.2.6.5 Fin Nets

Small fins, lower grade fins and fin assortments are normally processed into fin nets. The washed wet fin needles are arranged into fin nets of around 100 gm each and sun dried. Some traditional processors bleach the wet fin nets prior to sun-drying. The fin nets are bleached for about 20 minutes in a special chamber, where sulphur is burned beneath the trays carrying wet fin nets. The bleached fin nets are then sun-dried. This treatment also helps to protect the product from insect attack.

6.2.7 Artificial shark fin[71]

This is a product with the appearance and, to some extent, the texture of shark fin that has been produced from animal and plant materials. Because of its looks and its comparatively very low price, some restaurants use it instead of shark fin with or without the knowledge of the consumer. To make the dishes more authentic, the restaurants usually mix artificial fins in with shark fin in a 30/70 ratio. It is probably most used at wedding dinners, where the respect for the dinner guests is upheld with the presence of fins, and the respect for the host’s finances is taken care of by lower costs.

A trained person can easily tell the difference between the artificial fins and the shark fin. Generally, the artificial fins are less elastic, break more easily and do not withstand heat as well as the real thing. It is not so easy for the untrained to know the difference, especially since most diners' experience of shark fin is rather limited. The price of artificial fins is US$10/kg.

According to Hooi, they have been used somewhat fraudulently, and have not established themselves as an alternative in the way that imitation crab sticks have for real crab. Perhaps manufacturers should re-think their marketing strategy since traders in Hong Kong believe imitations are as good as rejected. This is rather surprising since Chinese vegetarians like to prepare their food to imitate meat products in both appearance and taste, such as vegetarian duck, vegetarian pork and so on.

Marketing in Singapore is straightforward and the imitation articles can be sold as such but there must be no attempt to deceive the consumer by slick advertising or labelling. The vegetarian shark fin is made from the extract of mung bean, the green gram, which is a widely cultivated tropical legume. In fact, mung bean extract is traditionally made into a transparent thin noodle that is eaten quite widely in Southeast Asia, and in Hong Kong is called fun si. Liu (1997) said that imitation vegetarian shark fin is quite popular in Taiwan Province of China.

Chew and co-workers (1992) in Singapore, investigated what they believed to be imitation shark fin of animal origin. They referred to the process for producing analogues using mixtures of gelatines and gums which were coagulated by divalent or trivalent metal salt solutions which was patented by Kammuri, Nagahisa and Kamikawa (1990). They subjected samples to microscopic examination, solubility in water and potassium hydroxide (KOH) solution, spectroscopy and hydroxyproline content. They found that imitation fins do not have any fibrous structure like the real fin needles, but instead have characteristic transparent homogenous appearance. Real fins under x40 magnification show connective tissue fibres uniformly arranged in parallel and aligned with the lengthways axis of the fin needles.

Both real and imitation fins are insoluble in water. Boiling at 100oC for 3 hours and autoclaving at 10 psi/115oC for 30 minutes did not change their microscopic appearances.

When they were soaked in 10% KOH at 25oC for 3 hrs, the genuine fin needles disintegrated and dissolved. The membranous attachments to the needles took a little more time to dissolve, and occasionally cloudy precipitates formed on standing, but they quickly dispersed on gentle shaking. The five imitation products they examined remained intact even after 30 days in KOH at room temperature. Changes observed were slight swelling of the needles, a softening of texture, and a loss of yellow coloration into the solution. Under the microscope the needles showed numerous vacuoles consistent with swelling.

The extracts from soaking in 10% KOH for 3 hrs at 25oC showed different spectrophotometric profiles. Real shark fin showed 3 peaks at 292nm, 240nm and one between 220-230nm. The solution from the imitation fins soaked for 3 hours in 10% KOH showed only a single peak at 220-230nm. The blank 10% KOH solution also had an absorption peak at between 220-230nm. Boiling the real and imitation needles resulted in dissolution of the former and four out of five of the latter. Nevertheless, their absorption spectra remained unchanged. The authors believed that the absorption mixture at 240 and 292 coincided with that of tyrosine in alkaline conditions; shark fin contains a high proportion of this amino acid.

They also found that hydroxyproline was not a suitable test for imitation shark fin because the test itself was time-consuming and manufacturers could easily switch to a gelatine derived from fish to mask the fact that the product was an imitation.

Authentication tests are still provided by the Singapore authorities but the laboratory has not been engaged to provide this service for several years. This is because imitation fins appear to be pitted against a haloed article. Besides, armed with a simple chemistry set and microscope, a schoolchild can tell the difference between the fins.

6.2.8 Trade and markets

Shark fins have been eaten as Chinese delicacy for more than two millennia and world trade in these products has occurred for centuries. The economic and political changes in the Chinese market and the reduction in Chinese tariffs on shark fins in the mid 1980s led to a sharp increase in consumption, prices and trade in shark fins during the late 1980s and 1990s. This trade increase is only partially reported in FAO statistics, which indicates incomplete reporting by countries of their trade and production in these products. According to FAO statistics, world production of shark fins has increased from 1 800 tonnes in 1976 to 6 030 tonnes in 1997, peaking at 6 400 tonnes in 1989. In 1997 production of dried, unsalted shark fins was of 2 900 tonnes and that of dried, salted, etc. shark fins of nearly 3 100 tonnes. In 1997 China was by far the major producer with 2 200 tonnes, followed by India and Indonesia. Until 1994 India was the leading producer country.

Figure 50 World production of shark fins by continent in tonnes, 1976-1997

Source: FAO - FIDI.

World exports of shark fins have grown from 2 670 tonnes worth US$13.0 million in 1976 to 6 300 tonnes (US$90.4 million) in 1997, the peak year in volume. Re-exports in this year amounted to about 2 000 tonnes (US$20.0 million) with Hong Kong as the main reporting country. The 1997 exports consisted of 1 100 tonnes (US$25.0) of dried, unsalted shark fins and 5 200 tonnes (US$65.4 million) of dried, salted, etc. shark fins. In 1997 China was the leading exporter of shark fins with more than 2 400 tonnes (US$32.7 million), followed by Hong Kong (where 99.9% were re-exports), Indonesia and Japan. In 1994 Singapore was the second largest exporter of shark fins with about 1 000 tonnes but in the following three years there were no reports of these exports to FAO. In 1995 a sharp decline was experienced in total exports, as China did not report its exports and imports of shark fins to FAO that year. In 1997 Asian countries accounted for 98.1% of the total volume of exports. Central and Latin America contributed 0.3% and 1.6% came from Africa.

Figure 51 World exports of shark fins by continent in tonnes, 1976-1997

Source: FAO - FIDI.

FAO data shows an increase in world imports of shark fins from 3 700 tonnes worth US$20.0 million in 1976 to 7 025 tonnes worth US$55.5 million in 1997, the highest volume reached to date. China is also the major importer of shark fins with about 4 400 tonnes (US$24.8 million) in 1997, followed by Hong Kong, Malaysia and Indonesia. In 1994 Singapore was the second largest importer of shark fins with 1 200 tonnes but it has not reported its shark fin imports for the following three years. The consistent decline in 1995 shown in figure 52 is linked to China not reporting its shark fin imports to FAO, as also seen for exports. Asian countries imported 98.6% of world imports in 1997.

Figure 52 World imports of shark fins by continent in tonnes, 1976-1997

Source: FAO - FIDI.

6.2.8.1 Africa

According to FAO statistics, African production of shark fins is rather limited, amounting to 122 tonnes in 1997, with a peak of 360 tonnes in 1991. In 1997 South Africa was the major producer with nearly 80 tonnes but until 1995 Senegal was the leading country. In 1997 South Africa exported all the production reported to FAO and was also the leading African exporter of shark fins in volume terms. Other countries reporting exports of shark fins in this year were Senegal, Ghana, Madagascar and Tanzania. Senegal was the major exporter in value terms with US$2.2 million, followed by South Africa and Madagascar. In 1983 and 1984 Tanzania reported high quantities of exports with, respectively, 868 tonnes and 544 tonnes. Limited volumes of imports are reported by South Africa (18 tonnes, US$ 21 000).

In Africa very often the fishermen use only the fins and discard the meat because of marketing problems. Fins are favoured by the fishermen as they can obtain a good price due to foreign demand. Moreover, the fins can be easily processed and stored, as they do not require sophisticated treatment and storage facilities such as cold stores. In general fins exported by African countries are considered of low quality as very often the fins are cut incorrectly from the main shark body with too much meat adhering.

Countries such as Kenya, South Africa, Senegal, Tanzania, Gambia, Tunisia export directly to Asian countries such as China, Hong Kong, Thailand and Singapore and to the USA. Shark fins are exported from Somalia mainly to Dubai where local traders re-export them to Singapore and Hong Kong[72]. Prices in Somalia are variable: in 1996 they were US$18-22/kg for dirty cut fins, US$28-32/kg dirty cut in Dubai and US$34-39/kg for clean cut. All Somalian shark fins less than 20cm are exported to Yemen at US$14-16/kg.

6.2.8.2 Asia

As reported to FAO, production of shark fins by Asian countries has substantially increased from 1 740 tonnes in 1976 to peak at 6 200 tonnes in 1989. In 1997 it was nearly 5 900 tonnes. China was by far the leading producer with more than 2 400 tonnes, followed by Taiwan Province of China (2 160 tonnes), Indonesia (680 tonnes), Singapore (260 tonnes), India (210 tonnes) and Pakistan (90 tonnes). Other smaller producers were the Philippines, Maldives, Republic of Korea, Bangladesh and Japan. Exports of shark fins by Asian countries have increased from 2 480 tonnes worth US$12.3 million in 1976 to a peak of 6 150 tonnes worth US$87.0 million, in 1997. Of the 1997 total, re-exports amounted to 1 950 tonnes, worth US$20.0 million, reported mainly by Hong Kong. In 1997 China was the major exporter with more than 2 400 tonnes worth US$32.7 million, followed by Hong Kong (1 955 tonnes, US$20.0 million), Indonesia (680 tonnes, US$9.9 million), Japan (370 tonnes, US$13.4 million), Taiwan Province of China (260 tonnes, US$3.1 million) and India (244 tonnes, US$2.5 million). Other exporters were Viet Nam, Thailand, Philippines, Malaysia and in previous years Pakistan. Imports by Asian countries have grown from 3 700 tonnes worth US$20 million to a peak of 6 930 tonnes worth US$52.3 million in 1997. In that year China was also the leading importer with nearly 4 400 tonnes worth US$24.8 million. Other major importers were Hong Kong (2 200 tonnes, US$23.5 million), Malaysia (120 tonnes, US$652 000), Indonesia (98 tonnes, US$ 631 000), Thailand (60 tonnes, US$682 000 million) and Taiwan Province of China (36 tonnes, US$1.2 million). In previous years Singapore was a major importer with a peak of 1 900 tonnes, worth US$20.3 million in 1988.

Figure 53 Asia: production of shark fins by country in tonnes, 1976-1997

Source: FAO - FIDI.

Figure 54 Asia: exports of shark fins by country in tonnes, 1976-1997

Source: FAO - FIDI.

Figure 55 Asia: imports of shark fins by country in tonnes, 1976-1997

Source: FAO - FIDI.

China has a long history of utilization and consumption of sharks but, as reported by Cook[73], shark fin was considered to be a luxury product and its consumption was discouraged under post-war governments. However, since the mid 1980s, political and economic alterations in China have led to a spectacular growth in domestic consumption of shark fins and to repercussions on world fin prices and trade. China started to play a significant role in world shark fin trade as a consumer and a processing centre. Chinese tariffs on fins were substantially reduced either for the reciprocal trade classification (tariffs pertinent to countries/territories with which China has favourable trade treaties) or in general.

Table 23 Chinese tariffs on shark fins 1980-1998 (%)

Year

Reciprocal tariff

General tariff

Dried

Salted/in brine

Dried

Salted/in brine

1980-84

185

185

285

185

1985-90

95

95

115

95

1991-92

95

65

115

85

1993

90

35

115

45

1994-95

72

72

97

97

1996-98

55

55

80

80

1998-99

30

30

80

80

According to FAO statistics, in 1997 China was the leading producer, importer and exporter of shark fins in the world. Prices for shark fins are affected by their size and larger fins are preferred. According to the study by INFOYU and reported as Appendix IV.4 of this report, shark fins are imported as raw material and prepared shark fins are the major export and/or re-export shark products. Among shark fins imported are those of requiem sharks (from Japan, Spain and Singapore), scalloped hammerhead (from Spain), picked dogfish (from Japan) and blue sharks (from Indonesia and Peru). China exports or re-exports shark fins of the following species: scalloped hammerhead, blue sharks (to Japan), shortfin mako (to Japan), picked dogfish (to Hong Kong and Japan) and requiem sharks (to Japan, Spain and Singapore). In 1998 China imported about 4 240 tonnes of shark fins worth US$24.7 million. Japan was the main supplier with 2 700 tonnes worth US$18.6. Other major suppliers were Spain, Singapore, Indonesia, Hong Kong, Viet Nam, Norway, Costa Rica, Ecuador, Peru, and Fiji. In the previous years Malaysia, Taiwan Province of China, Uruguay, Australia, Brazil, USA, Republic of Korea, Guinea, South Africa, UK, Thailand, Philippines and United Arab Emirates were also significant suppliers. In 1998 China exported 2 000 tonnes of shark fins worth US$31.7 million. These exports also include re-exports. Hong Kong was by far the main outlet, taking 96.3% of the volume and 96.2% of the value of total exports. Other markets were Japan, Singapore, Macau, USA, Spain and France. In previous years Malaysia, Republic of Korea and Taiwan Province of China also received significant amounts. According to Parry-Jones[74], Chinese fishermen often sell shark fins directly at sea to fishermen of other countries/territories such as Republic of Korea, Hong Kong, Japan and Taiwan Province of China where they obtain higher prices than those offered by mainland traders. More information on the Chinese market can be found in Appendix IV.4.

Hong Kong[75] is a trader, processor and consumer of shark products, with each activity influencing the other. The most important shark product traded in Hong Kong is shark fin and this country is the most important market for shark fins in the world. Hong Kong has minimal domestic shark landings and all shark fins traded consist of imports and re-exports. Hong Kong has substantially increased its imports of shark fins in recent years. In 1972 they amounted to 2 400 tonnes, in 1982 they were 2 750 tonnes, in 1993 they reached 5 300 tonnes and 7 850 tonnes in 1996, according to the Census and Statistics Department[76]. Some of the imports are re-exported without further processing. In its trade statistics Hong Kong distinguish the category "domestic exports" (fins produced locally) from other exports, whether of local or foreign origin, which are further processed. The volumes of these domestic exports are small in comparison with those of imports and re-exports. Total re-exports amounted to 5 330 tonnes in 1996[77]. These and the previous figures differ from those reported to FAO which were 1 850 tonnes of imports in 1996 and 1 780 tonnes of re-exports. In 1997 they were, respectively, 2 200 tonnes and 1 950 tonnes. Shark fins are traded in dried and wet forms. According to Hooi[78], the average annual per capita consumption of dry fins in Hong Kong during 1993-6 was 387g. The average price of imported fins at this time was HK$294.1/kg. In Hong Kong shark fin is perceived as a food that promotes one's health and is of value in the Chinese worldview. It is served at banquets for special occasions such as weddings or birthdays. Consumption of shark fins is highest in the period October-February, typically months for weddings and other feasts and it culminates at the time of Chinese New Year. Shark fin soup became popular after World War II. Its popularity increased in the 1970s and consumption has grown since. Hong Kong imports shark fins from many countries such as China, Singapore, Spain, USA, Taiwan Province of China, Thailand, Senegal, Pakistan, Philippines, Republic of Korea, Mexico, New Zealand and exports to China, Singapore, USA, Republic of Korea, France, Netherlands, UK, Germany and Malaysia. According to Parry-Jones[79], hammerheads, mako, blue, thresher, white, tiger, oceanic whitetip, blacktip and dusky shark are among the preferred species. Despite the fins of blue sharks being considered of low quality, due to their low fin needle content, they are amongst the major species traded as they are often taken as bycatch. As reported by Parry-Jones[80], estimates by fin traders suggest that blue shark may comprise 50 to 70% of the shark fins traded in Hong Kong. Fins are usually imported in raw, dried form and then processed by local people or re-exported to China and then re-imported after processing. The role of China in processing shark fins to be re-exported to Hong Kong has substantially increased since the Chinese policy reform in 1996, which allowed shark fin business operations to be set up of in China. Further information on this market may be found in Appendix IV.1.

According to FAO statistics, production of shark fins by Taiwan Province of China has fluctuated greatly in the period 1976-97, peaking at 3 500 tonnes in 1988. In 1997 it amounted to 2 160 tonnes, representing a substantial increase from 160 tonnes reported in 1996. Exports of shark fins have increased in the last few years but are not very consistent. There was a peak of 260 tonnes worth US$3.1 million in 1997. Imports also are not very significant with a maximum of 96 tonnes worth US$1.8 million in 1989. In 1997 imports were 36 tonnes, valued at US$1.2 million. Shark fins are consumed in Taiwan Province of China. Long, wide shark fins with a rough texture and high density of spindles are judged of better quality[81]. Smooth hammerhead (Sphyrna zygaena) and dusky sharks are considered of superior quality. The great bulk of exports of shark fins from Taiwan Province of China go to Hong Kong. Other markets are China, Malaysia, USA, Singapore and Republic of Korea. Major suppliers to the market are Indonesia, Hong Kong and Singapore.

Singapore is an important centre for trade and consumption of shark fins. These products are mainly consumed in restaurants due to the long preparation time of the shark fin soup. Shark fins can be found in canned form in markets and supermarkets. Brown shark and blue sharks are the most popular species imported. Other species are hammerhead, tiger and white sandbar sharks. Main suppliers to the Singapore's market are Hong Kong, Thailand, India, Yemen, Japan, Spain, and Taiwan Province of China. Singapore did not report its production and trade data since 1995 to FAO but in 1994 it was the second world exporter and importer of shark fins. According to the statistics reported by Chen in Appendix IV.2 of this report[82], imports of dried or salted shark fins peaked in 1988 at 1 900 tonnes and were 930 tonnes in 1996, while imports of prepared shark fins peaked at 144 tonnes in 1995 and decreased to 71 tonnes in 1996. Singapore exports shark fins to countries such as Hong Kong, Taiwan Province of China, China, Indonesia, USA, France, UK and Germany. More information on this market can be found in Appendix IV.2 of this report.

Japan is an important producer and exporter of shark fins. According to FAO statistics, in 1997 Japan was the world-leading exporter of dried, unsalted shark fins in value terms. Fins from Japanese vessels are judged of good quality and are processed by dealers. The bulk of the Japanese production of shark fins is exported as there is a very limited consumption at home, generally limited to Chinese restaurants. The fins of mako, hammerhead and sandbar are better appreciated and large fins are preferred to small ones. Fins of blue and salmon sharks are considered of lesser quality but are more available and less expensive. Only the lower section of the tail fin of blue sharks is used to prepare the soup. Imports of shark fins are not reported in Japanese statistics but, according to the records of Japanese trading partners, Japan imports limited amounts of shark fins, mainly from Taiwan Province of China. These imports are often re-exported to countries such as Hong Kong and Singapore. According to Japanese national statistics, Japan exported 370 tonnes of dried shark fins worth US$13.4 million in 1997. The great bulk was directed to Hong Kong (286 tonnes worth US$11.9 million) followed by China, Indonesia, and Singapore. The volume of Japanese exports of shark fins have consistently declined from 1 070 tonnes in 1981 to 370 tonnes in 1997. Japan also produces artificial shark fins, which are generally exported. More information on the Japanese shark fin market can be found in the section on Japan in this publication.

The main products of the Indonesian shark fisheries are fins and tails. The fins are mainly destined for foreign markets while domestic consumption is mainly in Chinese restaurants. According to Keong[83], Jakarta, Surabaya (East Java) and Ujung Pandang (South Sulawesi) are the dominant fin exporting cities, with ethnic Chinese traders prevailing in this business. Keong also reports that, according to one exporter, the fins may be bought and sold up to ten times before they actually leave the country. Species, processing and size are the determinants of fin prices. The first and second dorsal fins and the upper lobe of the caudal fin from the white-spotted guitarfish are considered to be most valuable. The preferred shark species for fins are tiger, mako, sawfish, sandbar, bull, hammerhead, blacktip, porbeagle, thresher and blue shark. In 1995, fully processed fins were sold dried and packaged in supermarkets for up to US$330/kg. Small blacktip shark fins were sold fresh in Muara Angke (Jakarta’s fishing harbour) for US$1.80/kg, small dried blacktip shark fins were quoted at US$6/kg, and large dried fins, suspected to be from a hammerhead shark, were priced US$132/kg. Dried shark fins have been exported from Indonesia in consistent volumes for at least two decades. According to FAO statistics in 1996 Indonesia was the third largest exporter of shark fins in the world. In 1997 Indonesia exported[84] 676 tonnes worth US$9.9 million of which 54.6% in volume were directed to Singapore, 15.1% to Taiwan Province of China, 13.5% to Hong Kong and 11.5% to Japan. In 1997 Indonesia imported[85] 98 tonnes of dried shark fins worth US$630 710. Japan was the major supplier with 49 tonnes, followed by UK, Curaçao, Singapore, Spain and Singapore. Imports from Singapore have the highest unit value (US$33.6/kg), followed by those from Spain (US$14.6/kg) and the USA (US$12.5/kg).

In 1997 Republic of Korea exported 22 tonnes of shark fins worth US$815 000, with Singapore as the main market. In previous years other major destinations were Hong Kong and China. In 1997 imports of shark fins amounted to 11 tonnes worth US$664 600. Spain supplied 65.7% of the imports, followed by Hong Kong, the Philippines, Somalia and Viet Nam. Shark fins are not part of the traditional Koran cuisine and they are usually only eaten in Chinese restaurants.

In 1996 Thailand exported 27 tonnes of shark fins, worth US$1.8 million of which 84% went to Hong Kong. Other markets were Singapore, Japan, Australia and China. In 1997 Thai exports were 37 tonnes, valued at US$2.0 million. In 1996 Thailand imported 138 tonnes, 80.8% of which came from Hong Kong. Other major suppliers were the USA, India, Pakistan, Indonesia, United Arab Emirates, Japan, Spain and Norway. In 1997 Thailand imported 98 tonnes, valued at US$682 000.

Malaysia is a consumer of shark fins. Singapore and Indonesia are the main suppliers to the Malaysian market followed by Australia, Hong Kong, Fiji, Philippines and Maldives. Malaysia exports limited volumes of shark fins, with Thailand as its major market. In 1997 Malaysia exported 31 tonnes, worth US$173 000 and imported 122 tonnes, valued at US$652 000. Information on the Malaysian market can be found in Appendix IV.2 of this report.

The Philippines exports shark fins to Hong Kong, Singapore, Republic of Korea, Brunei, China and Australia. Fins are sold fresh or dried. Pakistan exports fins mainly to Hong Kong, Singapore and Thailand but also to the Republic of Korea, Burma, Norway, Sri Lanka and UK. In 1997 the Philippines exported 34 tonnes, worth US$422 000.

In India almost all the shark fins are exported. Domestic demand for fins is chiefly in major hotels. In India shark fins are available in Gujarat, Konkan coast, Orissa, Tamil Nadu and Andhra Pradesh. Fins are also sold in large quantities by the Lakshadweep Fisheries Department. In recent times fins have become available in the Andaman Islands where a good commercial shark fishery is established. The major varieties exported are ranja, pison and khada in order of importance, ranja commanding the highest market price. According to Varma[86], the following four species are usually collected for export of shark fins: Hammerhead/round headed shark (Sphyrna zygaena), grey dog shark (Rhizoprionodon acutus), sharp-nosed/yellow dog shark (Scoliodon laticaudus) and black finned/black tip shark (Carcharhinus melanopterus). Most of the shark fin exports are directed to Hong Kong and Singapore. Recently new markets have emerged such as UK, USA, Malaysia, Germany and Taiwan Province of China. According to FAO statistics, in 1997 India produced 211 tonnes and exported 244 tonnes, worth US$2.5 million.

6.2.8.3 Europe

European countries report nothing concerning trade in shark fins to FAO because these products are not covered by EUROSTAT statistics nor by most national statistics. European countries import processed dried fin noodles and prepared products such as canned fin soup. These products are imported from Asian countries such as Hong Kong, Singapore, Malaysia, Thailand and from African countries such as Tanzania. They are all destined for the Chinese communities in the main European cities, with France as the main importer, where they are sold in shops and ethnic restaurants. In the last few years Spain has developed an interesting export market for shark fins. Major destination markets for Spanish fins are China, Republic of Korea, Hong Kong and Thailand. Spain has increased its share of Chinese imports of shark fins in the last few years. Chinese import statistics show that in 1996 China imported 424 tonnes of shark fins worth US$1.6 million from Spain. By 1997 this had increased to 834 tonnes worth US$3.2 million and in 1998 it was 1 040 tonnes worth US$3.9 million. The trade statistics of Asian countries such as Hong Kong, Thailand and Singapore report imports of shark fins from Spain and from other European countries such as Portugal, Poland, France, Germany, Iceland, Norway and UK. Exports are mainly fins of blue sharks, picked dogfish, shortfin mako and thresher sharks.

6.2.8.4 North and Central America

According to FAO statistics, production and trade in shark fins by North American countries is rather limited, with the USA as major dealer. No production data are reported. In 1997 exports of shark fins only amounted to less than 500 kilograms, reported to FAO by Costa Rica, Mexico and El Salvador. Imports came to 78 tonnes, worth US$3.2 million, reported to FAO mainly by the USA. USA import data shows various Central American countries such as Costa Rica, Ecuador, El Salvador, Guatemala, Nicaragua, Panama and Trinidad and Tobago as suppliers of shark fins

In 1998 US exports of shark fins were recorded for the first time at 146 tonnes, worth US$1.3 million, of which 6 tonnes, valued US$43 500 were re-exports to Hong Kong. This latter imported 95.8% of the volume and 98.3% of the value of total US exports of shark fins and the rest went to Japan and China. The USA began to increase its production and exports of shark fins in the late 1970s, with considerable expansion in the following decades. US processors usually dry or freeze fins whole, export them to Hong Kong and Singapore for processing and then re-import the processed products. Fins of picked dogfish are often processed yet they are internationally considered of lower value than fins from other species. Hammerheads and sandbar shark are considered to be better quality, followed by those from tiger, blacktip, dusky, bull and silky sharks. US imports of dried shark fins have increased considerably but in 1998 a year on year decline of 19.9% in volume and 44.5% in value were experienced to reach 62 tonnes worth US$1.7 million. Major suppliers were Australia, Argentina, Mexico, Hong Kong, Brazil and Gambia. The domestic market for shark fins is expanding due to the abundant Chinese populations, mainly in urban areas on the East and West coasts such as San Francisco, Los Angeles and New York. Shark fins imported from Asian countries such as Hong Kong, Korea and Taiwan Province of China consist mainly of dried or processed fins, fin nets or canned shark fin soup. These products are sold in ethnic shops and in restaurants. For more information on this market, see the US section of this publication.

Although Mexico is a significant supplier of shark fins, particularly to the USA, shark fins are rarely identified separately from other shark or fishery products in Mexican fisheries and export statistics. Exports of shark fins are said to have increased substantially in the last few years. Mexico exports shark fins to Asian countries such as Hong Kong, Singapore, Thailand and Taiwan Province of China as well as to the USA. According to Rose[87], US imports of shark fins from Mexico are usually of low-quality cut and so vulnerable to spoilage but, because of their abundance and the low cost of transport, they are imported in consistent volumes. They are then typically re-exported, frozen or dried, to Asia for processing.

6.2.8.5 Latin America

Brazil and Uruguay are the only Latin American countries that report production of shark fins to FAO. In 1997 Uruguay was the main producer with only 5 tonnes, but in the previous years this role was played by Brazil with 190 tonnes in 1996 and a peak of 370 tonnes in 1993. All of Brazilian production of shark fins is exported and it is the chief Latin American exporter of these products. In 1997 total Latin American exports amounted to 18 tonnes worth US$535 000, representing a substantial decline from the 205 tonnes, worth US$ 2.4 million in 1996 and from the peak of 477 tonnes, valued at US$3.8 million in 1993. Beside Brazil, other exporters are Uruguay, Guyana, Suriname, Chile, Ecuador and Peru. As reported by Caro Ros in Appendix IV.5 of this report, most Latin American countries export shark fins to Asian countries such as Hong Kong, Singapore and Taiwan Province of China. In Uruguay the framework of agreements between vessel owners and crews gives the latter a right to a determined percentage of the vessel's catch ("la valija") as well as the already dried shark fins that have been collected during the voyage. Practically 50% of these shark fins are sold directly to dealers or intermediaries at the dock, almost always evading custom controls. In Argentina fins generally arrive at the dock almost as an end product and are traded by brokers who buy them directly on the dock. The average fob price for fins exported from Argentina to Hong Kong in the last six years is US$12.3/kg for smooth-hounds and US$27.4/kg for other shark species. Also Chile exports shark fins to Asian countries such as Hong Kong, Japan, Singapore and Taiwan Province of China. The average fob prices for these exports to Asian countries are US37.1/kg for shortfin mako, US$35.1/kg for blue sharks and US$37.7/kg for sharks not specified.

6.2.8.6 Oceania

Only Fiji reports its production of shark fins to FAO, which amounted to less than 500 kilograms in 1997 and to 20 tonnes in 1996. In 1997, either exports and imports were less than 500 kilograms. Only Solomon Islands, Kiribati, Vanuatu and Fiji reported exports of shark fin, and only Australia and Marshall Islands reported imports. Yet examination of the import statistics of countries such as the USA, Republic of Korea, Malaysia and Hong Kong shows volumes of shark fins exported from New Zealand, Australia, Fiji and Solomon Islands.

Most Australian imports go to Victoria and New South Wales. The main suppliers are Hong Kong, Japan, Singapore, Thailand, the Philippines and Fiji. Exports are not reported by Australian customs but the statistics of importing countries reveal exports to Asian countries such as Hong Kong, Singapore, Malaysia and Republic of Korea.


[60] KREUZER R., AHMED R., idem.
[61]Part of this section is taken from CHEN S.P., “Shark products markets in Singapore and Malaysia”, Appendix IV.2 of this report.
[62]CHEN S.P., idem.
[63]From KREUZER R., AHMED R., idem and LAI KA-KEONG E., “Shark fins, processing and marketing in Hong Kong”, INFOFISH marketing digest, 5/83, 1983.
[64]KREUZER R., AHMED R., idem.
[65] KREUZER R, AHMED R., idem.
[66] CHEN S.P., idem..
[67]KREUZER R., AHMED R., idem.
[68]The author of this section is CHEN S.P, idem.
[69] YANG, LIN and ZHOU (1997) The complete Book of Dried Seafood & Foodstufs (Chinese Edition). Hong Kong, China
[70] The author of the following section is SUBASINGHE S., “Shark fin, sea cucumber and jelly fish. A processor’s guide”, INFOFISH Technical Handbook 6, 1992.
[71] This section is mainly based on the Appendix IV.2, “Shark products markets in Singapore and Malaysia”, of this report (author CHEN S.P.) and Appendix IV.1, “Hong Kong”, (author HOOI K.K.).
[72] LOVATELLI A., idem.
[73] COOK S., "Trends in shark fin markets: 1980s, 1990s and beyond", Chondros, 15 March 1990.
[74] PARRY-JONES R., idem, 1996.
[75] This paragraph is mainly based on Appendix IV.1 of this report, "Hong Kong" by HOOI K.K.
[76] As reported by HOOI K.K. in Table 1 of Appendix IV.1 of this report.
[77] Source: Census and statistics department, from Table 1, HOOI K.K., idem.
[78] HOOI K.K., idem.
[79] PARRY-JONES R., "TRAFFIC report on shark fisheries and trade in Hong Kong", in "TRAFFIC report on shark fisheries and trade in the East Asian region", of the "The world trade in sharks: a compendium of TRAFFIC's regional studies volume I", TRAFFIC, 1996.
[80] PARRY-JONES R., idem, 1996.
[81] CHEN G.C.T, LIU K.M., JOUNG S.J, PHIPPS M.J., "TRAFFIC report on shark fisheries and trade in Taiwan", in "TRAFFIC report on shark fisheries and trade in the East Asian region", of the "The world trade in sharks: a compendium of TRAFFIC's regional studies volume I", TRAFFIC, 1996.
[82] The trade development board statistics - Imports and Exports reported in table 1.1.1 of Appendix IV.2 of this report, author CHEN S.P..
[83] KEONG C.H., "Shark fisheries and trade in sharks and shark products in Southeast Asia", in "The world trade in sharks: a compendium of TRAFFIC's regional studies", vol. II, TRAFFIC, 1996.
[84] "Indonesia foreign trade statistics, Exports, vol. I, 1997", Badan Pusat statistik, Jakarta, Indonesia, 1998.
[85] "Indonesia foreign trade statistics, Imports, vol. I, 1997", Badan Pusat statistik, Jakarta, Indonesia, 1998.
[86] VARMA R.A.M, idem, 1998, Appendix IV.3 of this report.
[87] ROSE D., idem, 1998.

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