Wedding Without Fins Project Wedding Without Fins Project Emboldening A Fin-Free Culture In Weddings WWF-Malaysia together with partners, the Association o...

Wedding Without Fins Project Wedding Without Fins Project Emboldening A Fin-Free Culture In Weddings WWF-Malaysia together with partners, the Association of Wedding Professionals Malaysia (AWP) and Shark Savers Malaysia (SSMY), announced their consumer engagement on shark-fin consumption reduction through the “Wedding without Fins Project.” The objective of this project is to encourage the wedding industry to be stewards and to inspire wedding couples to go fin-free for their wedding ceremonies.

WWF-Malaysia Executive Director and CEO Dato’ Dr Dionysius S.K.

Sharma said, “Sharks are important in stabilising the marine ecosystem and keeping oceans healthy.

However, the shark population is declining as a result of overfishing and the high demand for shark fins.” “According to WWF’s 2015 Asian City Shark Fin Consumer Survey, it was found that 85% of shark fin soup consumption was tied with celebrations such as weddings.

WWF-Malaysia urges restaurants, retailers, and hotels to adopt a dining policy by removing shark fins from menus or substitute shark fins with alternative ingredients.

When businesses stop buying shark fins from suppliers, there will be a trickle-down effect to suppliers and shark catchers in the supply chain.

Suppliers would find sharks not as profitable anymore when businesses stop purchasing.

Soon, shark fins will not be a high-demand item for catchers to hunt them.

Our theory of change states that when the demand stops, the killing will too.” Many wedding planners are dedicated to help couples achieve their dream wedding while staying relevant to emerging trends and preferences.

Therefore, there is a need to set a few industry standards and to provide ethical service to every client.

AWP was formed to set standards and spur the industry to greater heights by improving the professionalism and credibility of its members.

AWP President Leticia Hsu emphasised, “The plight to end the consumption of shark fins around the world is a long and difficult journey.

We, at AWP, are passionate about bringing this awareness to our members and to consumers, in hopes of contributing towards the bigger fight.

We need to better educate consumers on the alternatives to shark fin soup served at weddings, and that we can all refrain from putting an end to sharks by going fin-free for our weddings.

Let our future generations enjoy Mother Nature as it should be.” WWF-Malaysia’s strong shark conservation ally, SSMY, further extends its education and awareness endeavours to wedding couples.

The line-up of SSMY 2018 celebrity ambassadors at the Wedding without Fins Project launch From left: Leticia Hsu, President of AWP; Jai Kishan, General Manager of New World Petaling Jaya Hotel; Dr Ong Kian Ming, Member of Parliament for Bangi; Dato’ Dr Dionysius S.K.

Sharma, Executive Director and CEO of WWF-Malaysia; Yeo Bee Yin, Member of Parliament for Bakri (and now MESTECC Minister); and Abner Yap, President of SSMY, pictured at the Wedding without Fins Project press conference.

“We will socialise the issue closely with wedding couples as well as produce creative wedding-themed artwork for their celebrations,” said Alicia Tan, CFO of SSMY.

“By making a responsible decision in refusing shark fin soup and using unique awareness materials at their weddings, newlyweds can play a big role in reversing the trend of serving shark fin soup at weddings.” In addition, SSMY announced its SSMY 2018 ambassadors of known celebrities to help influence wedding couples as well as the general public on the importance of conserving sharks, and to break away from a tradition that is detrimental to the marine ecosystem.

The Wedding without Fins Project recently conducted a dialogue for individuals from the wedding industry to drive the change in persuading consumers to opt for fin-free menus and to encourage shark fin eateries to promote alternatives and phase out shark fins in the near future.

Shark conservation is a long-term initiative; environmental non-governmental organisations’ efforts are apparently deficient in reducing threats of human impact on sharks and the marine ecosystem.

Hence, WWF-Malaysia is calling on Malaysian businesses and consumers to transform the market by reducing the availability and consumption of shark fin soup at wedding ceremonies.

For more information and to be part of this movement, please visit weddingwithoutfins.com..

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