[Coral-List] Aquacultured corals: so easily duped are so many people, hard to convince them otherwise

Lee Goldman coralfarmguam at yahoo.com
Sun Feb 24 22:13:09 EST 2008

Dear List,
  In association with recent posts about the failure of MAC, clearly as an industry, we are no different from any industry whose success (or failure) is dictated by supply and demand. Eduaction (at both the point of origin AND at the consumer end) is not inadequate and certainly does not lack passion and desire to see things right. So what caused the dismissal of conservation practices in Vanuatu (like so many other places)? Demand...from people who, I suspect, really don't care about what is going on (either they know and don't care or don't care enough to know - again at both the P of O, and a majority of the consumers).
  What's worse?
  How about every retail shop slapping a label on their corals saying they were 'aquacultured' with the highest level of coral conservation in practice. Easy words to say, hard to prove it's not as they say.  So easily duped are so many people, hard to convince them otherwise.
  As someone who has spent many years developing what I believe to be a win-win situation (growing corals from larvae so that no existing coral colonies are harvested from the reef) I was motivated by the desire to see change within the industry. Living out in Micronesia and the Philippines for over 10 years, my approach was to include local business and sustainability so that jobs, money, and respect can be abundant in local communities. Alas, I am yet again frustrated by this recent news from Vanuatu.
  Although the aquarium trade is, at times, it's own worst enemy in the area of coral conservation, I know many people within the industry who are trying their best to educate and do the right thing. As we can see by the example posted today, we lost more ground...
  Lee Goldman
  Coral Farm Guam
  PO Box 6682
  Tamuning, GU
  Coralfarmguam at yahoo.com

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