Dried shark fins sold at the Guangzhou Fish Market.
Shark fins are used to make shark fin soup, a delicacy once prepared exclusively for the Chinese emperors and nobility. The cartilage from the fin is carefully dried and prepared, and used as an ingredient in a soup flavored with seafood or chicken broth and herbs.
The demand for shark-fin soup has rocketed. It is still associated with privilege and social rank - a bowl of soup can cost up to US$100 - but the explosive growth in the Chinese economy means that hundreds of millions of people can now afford this luxury. Many consider it de rigueur at important events such as weddings, birthdays, business banquets and during Chinese New Year celebrations.
- RANDY OLSON
- Image Size
- 4368x2912 / 11.4MB
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- Contained in galleries
- Global Fish Crisis: Still Waters_National Geographic magazine, 04/2007