Europe’s Appetite for Seafood Propels Illegal Trade

New York Times
By ELISABETH ROSENTHAL
Published: January 15, 2008

LONDON — Walking at the Brixton market among the parrotfish, doctorfish and butterfish, Effa Edusie is surrounded by pieces of her childhood in Ghana. Caught the day before far off the coast of West Africa, they have been airfreighted to London for dinner.

Ms. Edusie’s relatives used to be fishermen. But no more. These fish are no longer caught by Africans.

On the underside of the waterlogged brown cardboard box that holds the snapper is the improbable red logo of the China National Fisheries Corporation, one of the largest suppliers of West African fish to Europe. Europe’s dinner tables are increasingly supplied by global fishing fleets, which are depleting the world’s oceans to feed the ravenous consumers who have become the most effective predators of fish.

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