This Popular Australian Seafood Store Was Just Convicted for Hacking Apart Live Lobsters

One of the biggest seafood stores in Sydney, Australia, was convicted of animal cruelty after a worker was videotaped hacking the tail off a lobster while the animal was still alive and fully conscious. The video shows the lobster struggling desperately for nearly half a minute before the worker feeds the lobster through a band saw, dismembering the animal.

Nicholas Seafood was charged with violating the New South Wales Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act. Crustaceans were added to the act in 1997 in response to growing evidence that crustaceans feel pain. The popular seafood store pled guilty and was sentenced to a $1,500 fine. This is the first conviction for cruelty to a crustacean in New South Wales.

In the United States, lobsters are denied even the most basic legal protections. Not a single federal animal welfare law protects crustaceans or fish. Many states also exclude crustaceans and fish from their animal cruelty laws. As a result, countless aquatic animals used by the seafood industry endure lives of unimaginable pain and slow, cruel deaths.

MFA’s 2010 undercover investigation of a fish slaughter facility in Texas exposed workers using pliers to pull the skin off live fish and cutting fully conscious fish in half. Prosecutors in Texas refused to act despite clear evidence that these fish were in excruciating pain. That’s why MFA is working to strengthen laws to protect all animals, including aquatic animals like lobsters and fish.

Thankfully, you don’t have to wait another minute to help stop the needless suffering of these sensitive animals. By choosing healthy plant-based meals, you can ensure that lobsters, crabs, fish, and other aquatic animals are spared senseless cruelty and death. Check out for delicious recipes, including six savory vegan seafood recipes and nine vegan sushi recipes!