One of the keys to ending shark finning is to be vigilant and aware of the global shark fin trade including new and emerging markets.
Conservationists who focus on fishermen and not key market trading partners are at a disadvantage when it comes to curbing trade:
Mexican companies who participated in the Japan International Seafood and Technology Exhibition (JIST) this year, managed to market their seafood products for around MXN 11 million (USD 865,300), as reported by the Ministry of Agriculture, Livestock, Rural Development, Fisheries and Food (SAGARPA).
The news was announced in a report prepared by the general coordination of Trade and Export Promotion, through MexBest who were present at the show.
For the first time, customers and visitors at JIST had access to marine products from Mexico.
Among the resources exhibited were octopus, sea cucumber, shark fin, different varieties of frozen fish, canned abalone and conch and fresh bluefin tuna.
According to the general coordinator of Trade Promotion, Gabriel Padilla Maya, the reported short-term sales amounted to MXN 3.2 million (USD 251,700) and medium term, MXN 7.5 million (USD 590,000).
Maya stressed that the Japanese fair is important not only for the specific sales but also as it will increase the presence of Mexican products in the Asian market.
During the presence of the Mexican delegation, between 21 and 23 July, business meetings were held with more than 15 Japanese importers. These contacts are expected to help boost the marketing of annual production of nearly 200 tonnes of abalone, 1,300 tonnes of lobster and 200 tonnes of shrimp.
SAGARPA indicated that Mexican exports of seafood to Japan account for between 10 and 12 per cent of their total sales in the Asian market.
The main marine products exported to Japan are: tuna, shrimp, sardine, sea urchin and octopus.
According to the Mexican Agricultural Ministry, in 2009 total agri-food exports amounted to around USD 661 million.
JIST 2010 brought together 600 exhibitors and received around 35,000 visitors, El Universal reported.