An overview of major shark and ray catchers, traders, and species
Almost 600,000 metric tonnes of sharks and rays caught each year by world’s top 20 catchers. A TRAFFIC study has identified the world’s top 20 shark and ray catchers and traders, who collectively account for some 80% of global reported catch averaged by year between 2007–2017. Commercial and artisanal vessels from Indonesia, Spain, India, Mexico, and the United States topped the list of catchers during the studied time period, with a combined total of 333,952 metric tonnes (mt) caught on average each year. Shark fin consumption in East Asia, traditionally eaten as a soup during celebratory occasions, is a key driver of trade. An average of 16,177 mt per year of shark fin products (with an average value of USD294 million per year) were reported as imported worldwide during 2000–2016.