World Video | Defence | Foreign Affairs | Natural Events | Trade | NZ in World News | NZ National News Video | NZ Regional News | Search


"Dolphin-Safe" Labels Manipulate the Market

"Dolphin-Safe" Labels Manipulate the Market

"Dolphin-safe" labels are a fraud. That is the conclusion of Bill Watson, a trade policy analyst from the Cato Institute. In anopinion piece for Forbes, Mr. Watson outlines the World Trade Organization appeal that was found in favor of Mexico and diagnoses the main problem of the labeling regime: "...that the law defining dolphin-safe is actually designed to mislead consumers about the fishing methods used to catch tuna."

The tragedy of the dolphin-safe label is that consumers really do care about dolphins. Mr. Watson notes that "whether companies can market their tuna as dolphin-safe has a huge impact on consumer and retailer behavior. Currently around 98% of canned tuna sold in grocery stores carries the label. By most measures, the "dolphin-safe" label should be deemed a success--consumers responded to information and the market responded to consumers."

However, the sad reality is that just because it's labeled "dolphin-safe" doesn't mean any dolphins were harmed in the harvest of that tuna -- it just means that it wasn't harvested using one specific type of fishing. The type of fishing that is considered "dolphin-safe" under the U.S. is incredibly harmful to other species and to dolphins themselves. In his article, Mr. Watson says that "the major U.S. producers catch tuna using fish aggregation devices (FADs), a practice that activists have condemned as 'floating death traps' because of its high incidence of bycatch."

To read the full article, please click here.


© Scoop Media

World Headlines


Pacific: Tongan PM 'Akilisi Pohiva Dies, Aged 78

A constant thorn in the side of the monarchy and nobility, Mr Pohiva's lifelong battle for representation had seen him fired from the public service and charged with sedition... More>>


Untied Kingdom: UK PM Moves To Suspend Parliament In Weeks Before Brexit

The Prime Minister has briefed Cabinet colleagues that the government will bring forward an ambitious new legislative programme for MPs’ approval, and that the current parliamentary session will be brought to an end. More>>


Gordon Campbell: On The Hong Kong Protest Movement

The pro-democracy protests enjoy huge support among Hong Kong’s youth, partly because the democratic systems currently at risk have only a limited time span. More>>


Pacific Island Forum: Australia v Everyone Else On Climate Action

Traditionally, communiques capture the consensus reached at the meeting. In this case, the division on display between Australia and the Pacific meant the only commitment is to commission yet another report into what action needs to be taken. More>>


For NZ, It Was May 6: Earth Overshoot Day 2019 Is The Earliest Ever

Humanity is currently using nature 1.75 times faster than our planet’s ecosystems can regenerate. This is akin to using 1.75 Earths... More>>