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Want to Help End the Seal Hunt? Boycott Canadian Seafood.

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  • Alexandra Yurkiw
    http://www.hsus.org/marine_mammals/protect_seals/why_a_boycott_of_canadi an_seafood.html Animal and environment protection organizations have negotiated for
    Message 1 of 1 , Feb 26, 2005

      Animal and environment protection organizations have negotiated for
      years with the Canadian government to put an end to its seal hunt-the
      largest commercial slaughter of marine mammals in the world. But as the
      kill levels and the
      _seal_hunt_huge_death_count_massive_resistance.html> cruelty of the
      hunt escalate, it is clear Canada will only take action once the
      politics and economics surrounding this issue change.
      This is why the Protect
      ork.html> Seals network, which includes The HSUS, will call for a
      boycott of Canadian seafood products as soon as the first baby seal is
      killed in March 2005. The network believes the Canadian government will
      quickly realize the economic impact of a fisheries boycott is too high a
      price to pay for the seal hunt.
      It is the connection between commercial fisheries and the seal hunt, and
      the economics of both industries, which makes a boycott of Canadian
      seafood products a logical next step in ending the annual hunt. And it
      is American distributors of Canadian seafood who are the ones-perhaps
      the only ones-who have the leverage needed to convince the Canadian
      government and individual fishermen to stop the slaughter of seals.

      Help stop
      <https://secure.hsus.org/01/fight_animal_cruelty?source=gabact> the
      seal hunt and other forms of animal cruelty.
      Sealers are fishermen. Seal hunting is what they do during the
      off-season in coastal Newfoundland and Quebec. Each fisherman/sealer
      earns about one twentieth of his annual income from sealing. Out of a
      population of more than 30 million people, less than 5,000 Canadians
      participate in the commercial seal hunt each year.
      Sealing accounts for a tiny fraction of the value of the fishery. Even
      in Newfoundland, where 90% of sealers live, the economic contribution of
      the seal hunt is marginal at best. Ninety-eight percent of the landed
      value of Newfoundland's fishery comes from fish, while only 2% comes
      from seals. It is important to note that Newfoundland's fishery has
      never been wealthier in its history, and that the growth is due largely
      to shellfish.
      The bulk of Canadian seafood-an estimated 75% of it-is exported to the
      United States, generating more than $3 billion (CAD) annually for the
      Canadian economy. In contrast, the seal hunt provides only a few million
      dollars each year to Canada.
      The Importance of Snow Crabs
      Since nine out of ten sealers reside in Newfoundland, it makes sense to
      target the fishermen in that region. One way to get them to listen to
      the international outrage over the seal hunt is to hit them in the
      pocketbook, and that means snow crabs.
      More than 80% of the value of Newfoundland's fishery is from shellfish
      such as snow crabs, while sealing accounts for only 2%. Canadian snow
      crab exports to the United States-the bulk of which originate in
      Newfoundland-are valued at more than $370 million (USD) a year. This
      dwarfs the few million dollars from the seal hunt in comparison.
      Almost all U.S. snow crab imports come from Canada. So simply by
      eliminating just one product from their menus, American restaurants can
      send a direct message to the very industry and individuals responsible
      for the seal hunt.
      Sign the Pledge
      The Canadian government, Canada's fishing industry, and individual
      sealers face an important economic decision in the coming weeks. When
      the first seal pup is clubbed or shot to death this spring, the
      ProtectSeals network will call for a U.S. boycott of Canadian seafood
      If you own or run an American restaurant that distributes Canadian
      seafood, your choice not to sell snow crabs or other Canadian seafood
      products can play a vital role in helping us end the seal hunt. By
      signing our pledge form, you will help us demonstrate to the Canadian
      fishing community that continuing the seal hunt puts at risk the most
      lucrative parts of its industry. The pledge form will be ready soon; in
      the meantime, you can e-mail protect-seals@... for more
      Fast Facts about Canada's Seal Hunt
      It's a cruel slaughter.
      * Fully 95% of the harp seals killed over the past five years have
      been under three months of age. At the time of slaughter, many of these
      defenseless pups had not yet eaten their first solid food or taken their
      first swim-they literally had no escape from the "hunters."
      * Video <http://www.hsus.org/video_clips/page.jsp?itemID=27261220>
      evidence clearly shows sealers routinely dragging conscious pups across
      the ice with boathooks, shooting seals and leaving them to suffer in
      agony, and even skinning seals alive.
      * In 2001, an independent team of veterinary experts studied
      Canada's commercial seal hunt. Their report concluded that in 42% of the
      cases they examined, the seal did not show enough evidence of cranial
      injury to even guarantee unconsciousness at the time of skinning.
      It's a reckless cull.
      * In 2003, the Canadian government authorized the
      2003_2006_seal_hunt_plan.html> highest quota for harp seals in history,
      allowing nearly a million to be slaughtered over three years.
      * In 2004, more
      _seal_hunt_huge_death_count_massive_resistance.html> than 353,000 harp
      seals were killed for their fur-the largest slaughter witnessed in half
      a century.
      * The last time sealers killed this many seals-in the 1950s and
      '60s-close to two-thirds of the harp seal population was wiped out.
      The seal hunt brings in very little money.
      * Even in Newfoundland, where 90% of sealers live, income from
      sealing accounts for less than one-tenth of 1% of the province's
      * Sealers are fishermen who engage in several fisheries throughout
      the year, and sealing revenues account for only about one twentieth of
      their total incomes.
      Killing seals may harm fish stocks.
      * About 3 % of a harp seal's diet consists of commercially fished
      cod. However, harp seals also consume many significant predators of cod,
      including squid. Removing harp seals may mean an increase in cod
      * The Canadian government clearly states there is no evidence that
      killing harp seals will help fish stocks recover, and scientists have
      expressed concerns that culling seals may in fact impede the recovery of
      ground fish stocks.
      If you oppose the seal hunt, you're in good company.
      * Polling shows 71% of Canadians-including 60% of Atlantic
      Canadians-support banning the seal hunt outright, or limiting the hunt
      to seals over one year of age. (Ipsos-Reid, 2004).
      * In European Union countries where polling has been conducted-the
      United Kingdom, France, Germany, and the Netherlands-close to 80% of
      people who are aware of the Canadian seal hunt oppose it (MORI, 2002).
      * Polling shows 79% of American voters oppose the Canadian seal
      hunt (Penn, Schoen & Berland, 2002).

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