'Say no to shark fin soup'

The KZN Sharks Board says more than 100 million sharks are killed a year.

The KZN Sharks Board has urged South Africans not to consume shark fin soup as more than 100 million sharks are killed annually.

DURBAN - The KwaZulu-Natal Sharks Board says individuals can assist in the protection of sharks by making a conscious decision not to consume shark fin soup.

According to the United Nations more than 100 million sharks are killed each year, faster than they can reproduce.

Governments have voted to protect Hammerhead, Porbeagle and Oceanic Whitetip sharks and two species of Manta rays at the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species (Cites) in Bangkok.

The Cites treaty will reportedly see the international trade sharks strictly regulated to ensure it is sustainable.

Hammerhead and Oceanic Whitetip fins are in demand for banquet soups in Asia, while Porbeagle sharks are in demand for their meat in Europe.

The soups are believed to have medicinal benefits and are served at celebrations.

The KZN board's head researcher Jeremy Cliff says he did not think "there's a lot of consumption in South Africa."

"There are huge international moves to try and boycott the purchase of things like shark soup because that is just perpetuating the problem," he says.