The most recognizable and rare source of caviar in history and the world today is the roe from Sturgeon fish. King Edward the second proclaimed that the sturgeon was a “Royal fish” and proclaimed that any sturgeons caught should immediately be presented to imperials. Of course the history of caviar would not be complete without speaking of the Russian Czars who made them so popular. The small golden eggs which were harvested from the golden sturgeon variety were so coveted by Russian nobility that the species is all but extinct today (Gordon 2003).
Even the Old Soviet Union realized the importance of Sturgeons as a valuable resource and imposed strict controls on caviar. Methods were employed to catch the Sturgeons but release their fingerlings back into the sea (Saffron 2002).
Overfishing, polluting and increasing demands were leading to the swindling numbers of sturgeons in the Caspian Sea. In 1997 the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora decided to regulate the fishing of sturgeons in order to ensure their survival in the face of increasing demand. In 2001 a coalition of countries agreed to completely halt Sturgeon fishing and in 2002 set new quotas for exports from several countries as well as create tougher laws and more resources towards halting illegal exports and Sturgeon fishing.
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