For Immediate Release:
January 12, 2022
Megan Wiltsie 202-483-7382
Manchester, N.H. – A seal entangled in a fishing net is hitching a ride on local buses to remind everyone that many seals—including the harbor, gray, hooded, and harp seals who live or winter on the New England coast—get caught in abandoned fishing gear each year. The new PETA ad campaign suggests that their suffering and demise can be stopped by simply going vegan to save these and other nontarget species killed by the fishing industry—in addition, of course, to the millions of fish who are pulled out of their ocean homes and who suffocate or are gutted alive on the decks of fishing boats.
“Seals want to live free as much as any other Granite Stater,” says PETA President Ingrid Newkirk. “PETA urges everyone to honor aquatic animals, large and small, as even fish have feelings, by simply choosing delicious vegan seafood instead.”
Approximately 640,000 tons of fishing gear—some of which can take 600 years to break down—are left in the ocean every year, and these “ghost nets” can become death traps for animals who become entangled in them, including seals, turtles, dolphins, and whales. As levels of discarded fishing gear increase, hundreds of thousands more marine animals will be killed.
PETA—whose motto reads, in part, that “animals are not ours to eat” and which opposes speciesism, a human-supremacist worldview—points out that many faux-fish options are available, including Gardein’s f’sh filets, Good Catch’s plant-based tuna, New Wave Foods’ plant-based shrimp, and Sophie’s Kitchen’s Vegan Crab Cakes.