European law enforcement worked across several European countries to discover a vast glass eel smuggling operation worth $1.5 million. Glass eels are wild baby eels, which are becoming increasingly rare. Glass eels are highly priced in Asian markets, for example for aquaculture farms. Smuggling these protected species is a lucrative business in Europe, since it is illegal to export eels. This is just the tip of the iceberg: The glass eel trafficking business is estimated to have grown to more than $3 billion in size over the past few years.
- Taylor, P. (June 7, 2021). “Major glass eel trafficking ring taken down by EU op”. Securing Industry.