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South Korea Emerges as Unlikely Source of Caviar

The unfertilized eggs of the sturgeon have made the fish one of the world’s most valuable wildlife resources. Some 90 percent of the world’s caviar comes from sturgeon in the Caspian Sea, but uncontrolled fishing after the collapse of the Soviet Union has greatly reduced wild populations. While nations around the Caspian (Russia, Turkmenistan, Kazakhstan, Azerbaijan and Iran) have agreed to ban sturgeon fishing, entrepreneurs elsewhere in the world are working on sustainable ways to harvest the expensive roe.

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The sterlet produces one of the rarest types of caviar, which is lighter in color. (VOA - S. Herman)
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The sterlet produces one of the rarest types of caviar, which is lighter in color. (VOA - S. Herman)

Caviar, coming from the unfertilized roe of sturgeon, are a delicacy. (VOA - S. Herman)
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Caviar, coming from the unfertilized roe of sturgeon, are a delicacy. (VOA - S. Herman)

Han Sang Hun, president of Almas Caviar,started the first caviar farm in South Korea 17 years ago. Others in the country tried to emulate him but did not succeed. (VOA - S. Herman)
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Han Sang Hun, president of Almas Caviar,started the first caviar farm in South Korea 17 years ago. Others in the country tried to emulate him but did not succeed. (VOA - S. Herman)

The quality and temperature of the water for the sturgeon, drawn from the Southern Han River, are critical for the sturgeon to thrive and produce commercial quality caviar. (VOA - S. Herman)
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The quality and temperature of the water for the sturgeon, drawn from the Southern Han River, are critical for the sturgeon to thrive and produce commercial quality caviar. (VOA - S. Herman)

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