If a new bill introduced in the New York State Assembly passes, New York will become the fifth state to ban the sale, possession, and distribution of shark fins, which are primarily used for shark fin soup, a traditional Chinese delicacy. Despite their lack of flavor, shark fins have become a valuable commodity in many Chinese-American communities due to their association with wealth and opulence. However, proponents of the ban point to the shark fin industry’s destructive and cruel nature—approximately 73 million sharks are killed for their fins each year, with some species nearing extinction. “This is going to be a huge adjustment for the community, but it’s important to be responsible citizens,” says Assemblywoman Grace Meng, who is co-sponsoring the bill.
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