January 26, 2015
CEO Note: GrubHub, It’s Time to Take Shark Fin Soup off The Menu
BY: Andy Sharpless
Did you know that you can order shark fin soup online?
Shark fin soup is hailed as a delicacy in many nations around the world, but it comes at a cost to these top ocean predators: Estimates say that about 73 million sharks are killed for their fins each year through the brutal practice of shark finning. Because of this, many species commonly found in the shark fin trade have declined by 99 percent around the world. Shark finning is illegal in the U.S., yet some companies continue to sell shark fin soup — which seriously undermines global shark conservation efforts. Therefore, Oceana is calling on GrubHub, a leader in online food delivery, to take shark fin soup off their menus.
I wrote an editorial with January Jones about this for The Huffington Post, which I’d like to share with you here.
GrubHub: It’s Time to Take Shark Fin Soup off The Menu
By January Jones and Andy Sharpless
Did you know that you can order shark fin soup online through GrubHub and its subsidiaries, Seamless, All Menus and Menu Pages?
Every year, about 73 million sharks are killed for their fins through a brutal practice known as shark finning, where sharks’ fins are removed while the sharks are still alive and left to bleed to death at sea. Why? To meet the global demand for shark fin soup, which is hailed by many as a delicacy and sold worldwide. Because of this desire for shark fin soup, many populations of shark species commonly found in the shark fin trade have declined by up to 99 percent.
Shark finning has been illegal in the United States since 2000. In addition, nine states and three U.S. territories have taken protections one step further and passed their own regulation that prohibits the possession, sale and trade of these fins — a move that helps close the U.S. shark fin market and reduce global demand. But despite federal and state laws that prohibit this ruthless practice, shark fin soup is available through restaurants on GrubHub sites in states where these products aren’t banned.
Therefore, Oceana is demanding that GrubHub, which operates in more than 600 cities, stop delivering shark fin soup throughout the U.S. In November, Oceana and its supporters wrote to GrubHub, asking them to take shark fins off the menu. GrubHub responded by saying it would delist shark fin products in the nine states where their trade is illegal, but they have not yet removed shark fin soup from the menu everywhere else in the U.S.
It’s time that GrubHub does the right thing for sharks — so we need your help. Please join Oceana by taking action and joining our Thunderclap by donating a Tweet, Facebook or Tumblr post that tells GrubHub to remove shark fin soup from the menu. Signing up is easy, and you can do so any time between now and this Wednesday, January 28 before 12 p.m. EST. Then, on January 28 at noon, an automated post will be sent via one of your social media accounts that tells GrubHub to take shark fins off the menu.
We’ve made real progress for shark conservation in the past several years, such as getting the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration to uphold state shark fin bans and getting the Shark Conservation Act passed in 2010 — which requires sharks be brought to port with their fins still attached. Now, it’s time for GrubHub to join other companies that have already banned shark fin products, like Disney, Amazon, Hilton, Marriott and the Starwood hotel group, and take action to protect sharks before it’s too late.
Please join us in our Thunderclap to GrubHub by signing up today. With thousands of messages about GrubHub on Facebook, Twitter, Tumblr and other social media outlets, we can create a loud call for shark conservation that, hopefully, the company can and will not ignore.
For the Oceans,
Chief Executive Officer
Shark fins drying in Callao, Peru. (Photo: © OCEANA / LX)