Mexican tuna has been banned from the US market since 1990 due to concerns over fishing techniques which put dolphins at risk. After prolonged negotiations, the US Department of Commerce authorised the entry of Mexican tuna with a “dolphin safe” label as of April, 2000. This decision drove up export projections and stimulated investment in Mexico’s tuna sector. Nevertheless, a California court has blocked the entry of Mexican tuna to date. It appears now that Mexico is on the verge of winning the legal battle. Katherine Hazard, environmental attorney for the US Department of Justice requested that a San Francisco, California appeals court overrule the decision which currently blocks Mexican tuna imports. The United States Department of Commerce also called for the tuna ban to be dropped.
By Steve Lewis, just-food.com correspondent