Shark Safe® Program

Goals of the Shark Safe certification program:
  • Increase public awareness of the need for shark conservation.
  • Reduce the sale, use, and trade of shark products.

Shark Safe certification is designed to give discerning customers confidence that their choices help protect sharks.

Restaurants and businesses recognized as Shark Safe have met scientific criteria and stringent guidelines, and they are awarded the authorization to display the Shark Safe logo. The logo and its associated recognition and prestige will help attract customers to the business.

Since sharks are universally recognizable and tend to attract attention, customers and passers-by not already familiar with the program will still be drawn to the displayed logo and will be inquisitive. Participating establishments can provide literature about the Shark Safe program, explain the basic premises, and direct people to the website.

Certification Requirements

Certain restaurants and businesses may apply for certification. Click here to see the standards to which Shark Safe establishments are held.

Becoming Shark Safe

Applying to join the ranks of Shark Safe Certified businesses is easy. Simply download a copy of the application, and mail the completed documents to us.

Ambassador Program

Enthusiastic individuals and concerned businesses can help us expand the scope and reach of our program.

Is there a restaurant you'd like to nominate because the proprietors already share our values?

Or perhaps you would you like to help convince your favorite restaurant to join the Shark Safe movement?

Contact us for further information and promotional materials.


In early 2007, mutual friend and colleague Rob Stewart (director of the film Sharkwater), introduced Christopher Chin (COARE's Executive Director) to Peter Knights (the Executive Director of WildAid), and a new alliance was formed. COARE and WildAid created the Shark-friendly Communities project, endeavoring to educate consumers and businesses about shark finning and the deleterious effects of shark fin soup consumption. The ultimate goal of that campaign was to encourage both the community and the city's administration of each locale to embrace a requirement that any shark meat or fins used come from legal and sustainable fisheries.

Shortly thereafter, the concept of Shark Safe certification was introduced at a COARE board meeting, and was adopted as a subproject of the Shark-friendly communities project. In July 2007, Jim Toomey, the artist behind the popular syndicated cartoon Sherman's Lagoon, joined the effort and agreed to design the Shark Safe logo.

The Shark-friendly Communities project has also since morphed into more of a melange of policy and educational efforts around the world, and COARE is proud to be a leader in shark conservation policy.