Newmarket the latest municipality to ban shark fin

By Shawne McKeown,
27. March 2012

Newmarket Town Council has passed a shark fin ban in what a local councillor described as a “show of support” for other municipalities that have adopted a similar rule, most notably Toronto.

The proposed bylaw was passed by an 8-1 vote Monday night. Coun. Jane Twinney said the bylaw likely won’t have a direct impact in Newmarket but was more of a symbolic move.

“I think this was more of a case of supporting the cause at a grassroots level to help in the cause of banning the sale of shark fin products at the provincial or federal level,” she told

Citing provincial pesticide laws, Twinney believes municipal action on issues can lead to changes at higher levels of government.

The debate over a shark fin ban in Toronto sparked large protests at city hall last November and heated debate within council chambers. Shark fin opponent Coun. Glenn De Baeremaeker piloted a flying inflatable shark during a council meeting to get his point across.

The ban passed 38-4. Mayor Rob Ford and three councillors Giorgio Mammoliti, David Shiner and Doug Holyday voted against it.

Various restaurant owners and the Toronto Chinese Business Association spoke out against the ban, insisting it would drive thousands of dollars of business, particularly weddings, out of the city.

Brantford became the first municipality in the country to pass a shark fin ban last May. Oakville, Pickering and London have also passed bans on the controversial Chinese delicacy.

California has also banned the sale, possession and trade of shark fin in the state.


NOTE:  Related previous post Newmarket: By-Law Draft for Shark Fin Ban


Leave a Reply