U.N. LIFTS BELUGA CAVIAR SALES BAN

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U.N. LIFTS BELUGA CAVIAR SALES BAN

 user 2007-02-16 at 12:13:00 pm Views: 51
  • #17388

    UN lifts beluga caviar sales ban
    The
    Beluga sturgeon can take up to 20 years to reach maturity.The United
    Nations has lifted a ban on beluga caviar exports after Caspian Sea
    states agreed to limit catches of the fish from which it is
    taken.Beluga caviar is the most expensive variety of the delicacy and
    can cost thousands of dollars a kilo.Almost all trade in caviar was
    banned last year because the sturgeon is fast disappearing from the
    Caspian, the source of about 90% of world caviar.Environmentalists have
    attacked the UN decision, calling it irresponsible.Experts estimate the
    Caspian’s caviar stocks have fallen by more than 90% since the late
    1970s because of overfishing – both legal and illegal.

    ‘Brink of extinction’
    UN-sponsored
    conservation body Cites has granted Azerbaijan, Kazakhstan, Iran,
    Russia and Turkmenistan permission to export 3.761 tonnes of beluga
    caviar in 2007.Ellen Pikitch, co-founder of Caviar Emptor, a group
    campaigning to protect Caspian Sea sturgeon, criticised the decision,
    saying the beluga sturgeon was on the brink of extinction.”This is
    irresponsible behaviour by international trade officials,” she
    said.Last month, Cites gave the same five countries the go-ahead to
    sell 96 tonnes of other varieties of caviar – 15% below the level set
    in 2005.Monday’s announcement also allows China and Russia to export
    about 3.2 tonnes of Amur sturgeon roe and 4.2 tonnes of Kaluga sturgeon
    roe.