More than fifty years ago, Network for Animals founder Brian Davies dedicated his life to ending the unnecessary brutality of the Canadian Commercial Seal Hunt. His latest offensive in this unstoppable crusade against cruelty is a US boycott of Canadian fish products.
Each spring, hunters take their boats to the icy east coast of Canada, armed with rifles and hakapiks – spiked wooden clubs. The ice is dangerous and difficult to predict, and the area vast and impossible to effectively monitor. Humane killing is simply an impossibility.
The US has already banned the import of Canadian seal pelts, as have the EU and many others, yet the Canadian government continue to search for new markets, while heavily subsidizing the industry’s costs of around C$15 million each year. This figure seems large, but pales in comparison to the C$3 billion earned from Canadian fish exports to the US. Many of these fishermen and companies are the very same people involved in the commercial seal hunt.
Seafood commonly sourced from Canada includes lobster, shrimp, crab, cod, haddock, mackerel, tuna and many other species. Seafood found in grocery stores will often be labeled with country of origin labels, but there are big exceptions. If seafood is processed into a larger meal such as a fisherman’s pie, it does not need to be labeled. Fish at a restaurant, or at a fish counter in your local supermarket also doesn’t have to be labeled by law.
The best course of action to take if you are unsure is to speak to your supermarket or restaurant manager, and ask them for information. Informing them of your personal boycott helps generate awareness of our movement. As this awareness grows and impacts the profits of the fishing companies, we will see results.