national

Iceland whale meat shipment to Japan sparks protests

33 Comments

The requested article has expired, and is no longer available. Any related articles, and user comments are shown below.

© 2015 AFP

©2019 GPlusMedia Inc.

33 Comments
Login to comment

More meat to add to that rotting in the freezers, I guess, and all just for a show of politics. Meanwhile, the money being used to buy this whale meat is being paid for by whom? Not restaurants who will try and sell it, and not the whalers here -- by the government, using our taxes, for propaganda purposes over something a consistently declining number of people eat.

In any case, it's also more proof that for Japan it's never about science when it comes to whaling -- it's only about soy sauce and mayonnaise.

2 ( +14 / -12 )

The only "research" Japan does with its whaling is determining how Japanese businessmen prefer whale sushi. The Japanese authorities are being disingenuous. They have plenty of whale meat samples in cold storage left over from previous hunts. They serve it once a year to Japanese school children to reduce stockpiles.

5 ( +13 / -8 )

Whale is delicious. Ain't ashamed to say it either!

-5 ( +13 / -18 )

Japan is trying to promote Japan as a tourist destination to grow its economy. This stupidity over whaling will deter tourist for years. If Abe is serious about promoting tourism, he would drop the appeal in the International count to continue whaling. This appeal is base on the need to catch and kill whale to determent the age of the whale which will aid the science to help sustain and increase the population of whales. Australia is defending the international Court decision to prohibit Japan whaling for scientific research. Australia scientist have developed a method to age the whale. This method is done by taking a skin sample while it alive without the need to kill the whale which has been proven internationally. Japan will lose the Court appeal and damage any attempt to promote Japan as a tourist destination.

3 ( +9 / -6 )

What a waste of life-I don't know anybody consuming whale meat.....

6 ( +13 / -7 )

Japan is trying to promote Japan as a tourist destination to grow its economy. This stupidity over whaling will deter tourist for years.

I think Japanese politicans are just very stubborn and the average person has very limited information on how this affects Japan's reputation abroad. Whether you think hunting whales is right or wrong or whether whale meat is delicious or not, it clearly isn't in Japan's economic interest to continue this.

At the other end of the spectrum, look at how sensitive China is about its international reputation; In the lead up to the 2008 Beijing games, the Chinese authorities went around shutting down all the factories that collected stray dogs and processed them into meat (which is apparently delicious by all accounts).

0 ( +4 / -4 )

*Whale is delicious. Ain't ashamed to say it either!***** i tasted it once, once it taste like a big lump of lard. so many healthier, tastier, cheaper meats available why would you want to eat that crap. but hey if you want to put that mercury ladened lard into your body you go right ahead.

3 ( +10 / -7 )

Environmentalists reacted angrily Tuesday to a controversial shipment of fin whale meat to Japan by an Icelandic whaling company, saying it flouted international conservation agreements.

When has Japan not flouted international agreeements?

0 ( +5 / -5 )

Why isn't the Sea Shepherd up North chasing down the Iceland and Norwegian Whalers? Seems like they have no opposition, or is it too much trouble for the SS to attempt to go up against real Vikings.

-2 ( +7 / -9 )

Why isn't the Sea Shepherd up North chasing down the Iceland and Norwegian Whalers

Because, unlike Japan, Iceland- and Norwegian whalers would beat the **** out of the pesky sea terrorists.

-2 ( +9 / -11 )

When has Japan not flouted international agreeements?

When has the IWC not flouted its own agreements?

0 ( +4 / -4 )

Back in Darwin's day, if an animal didn't adapt to the predators hunting it, it would go extinct. History and prehistory (before mankind) is littered with the corpses of animals unable to adapt to changing conditions. It's a story as old as life itself. Nature doesn't always balance the books through conservation. If whales are gonna be so easy to catch we should eat them all.

-6 ( +2 / -8 )

Iceland and Norway aren't defying anything. They are in compliance with all their IWC obligations.

And again, Japan does not use a 'loophole'. Article VIII was in existence decades before the moratorium. And they don't make a secret of it because the IWC regulations REQUIRE the whale to be processed.

he would drop the appeal in the International count to continue whaling

There is no such appeal.

-6 ( +3 / -9 )

Why isn't the Sea Shepherd up North chasing down the Iceland and Norwegian Whalers?

Partly because Iceland and Norway conduct their whaling within their own exclusive economic zone (EEZ). They can legally prevent Sea shephard vessels from entering their waters. They are also trying to kill whales primarily to boost their fish stocks and commercial fisheries.

Japan, on the other hand, is travelling half way around the world to kill whales on the high seas (or possibly Australia's EEZ) for the primary purpose of harvesting the whale meat. The whales within Japan's own EEZ have already been hunted to near extinction.

So while all the whale hunts are controversial, they are actually quite different.

0 ( +4 / -4 )

@Jorge I salute you for your daring (although evolutionist) comment! The same applies to Pandas, a species on that humans waste way too many tons of money to preserve that useless animal.

-5 ( +3 / -8 )

A friend of mine who worked in Japan for many years tells me that 60% of the whale meat sold is actually dolphin meat, presumable caught up in the Japanese fishing nets and drowned.Not that that makes it right either.

0 ( +4 / -4 )

Just tracked the ship, still in Iceland on the western coast.

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

Japan has been buying whale meats from Iceland and Norway for many years. It seems that Japan is just another buyer.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

I wonder which species of whale the meat comes from.

Japan does not need to import whale meat because there are thousands of tons in storage around the country. Japan's purchase of this meat is solely for political purposes to try to gain an ally in their continued fight to allow them to hunt whales commercially. How's that saying go, "The enemy of my enemy is my friend?" Or, should it be, "Birdes of a feather flock together?"

-2 ( +2 / -4 )

Kristjan Loftsson can't sell the flesh from the Fin whales, Icelanders don't buy it but Japan buys the belly flesh and tail, the rest is turned into oil. The majority of Icelanders no longer eat whale flesh and more is consumed by tourists believing it's a culture thing. The routes via Europe and Canada were closed down to prevent the whale flesh shipments so now via Angola, probably one of the donee countries supporting Japan at the IWC.

3 ( +6 / -3 )

Tried some "raw whale" sashimi once @ some expensive Izakaya. It wasn't bad at all. Just wayyy- overpriced. LoL, I just hope it really wasn't dolphin. For some reason, I've always admired those intelligent creatures.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

I too have eaten whale meat. It tastes like the finest beef you could possibly eat. They are a mammal after all and to say it tasted like lard is ridiculous.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Simply put commercial whaling is conducted under the guise of science and scientific whaling is just a way of getting around the rules. Therefore little or, if any useful information comes from it. Basically scientist don't need to kill whales in order to learn about them because technologies and techniques have already been discovered to study whales without them. In this modern day they can use DNA sampling and remote monitoring. Determining whale population estimates and trends can even be achieved from sighting surveys and other benign research techniques like photo identification of individual animals and acoustic techniques.

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

and scientific whaling is just a way of getting around the rules

But those rules only apply to members of the IWC. Japan could quit the IWC at any time and then be able to legally conduct commercial hunting. So if all they want to do is 'get around the rules' why not quit the IWC and not have to worry about the rule?

Basically scientist don't need to kill whales in order to learn about them because technologies and techniques have already been discovered to study whales without them.

Basically the IWC Scientific Committee has said that some of the information the Japanese collected could ONLY be collected with lethal methods.

-5 ( +2 / -7 )

Are the species of whale they hunt endangered?

2 ( +2 / -0 )

whale niku is yucky and has that no good taste :p

-4 ( +2 / -6 )

Japan has to show some honesty about its scientific research.the image portrayed overseas is very different to living reality in japan.

1 ( +3 / -2 )

Why isn't the Sea Shepherd up North chasing down the Iceland and Norwegian Whalers?

They're white people.

Are the species of whale they hunt endangered?

Minke whales, the main species caught, are classified "least concern". There are strict quotas on some other species. As is, whaling, even worldwide, is not going to wipe them out, they've got far more chance of meeting a far more grisly fate by killer whales.The main issue should be levels fish and krill stocks which they feed on.

Good luck trying to have an intelligent conversation with a "conservationist". There's other important species that face extinction, there's other species that live and/or killed in worse ways, but no, whales and dolphins are special. Even the "intelligence" argument doesn't apply to all types. You have to wonder why it's okay to eat mass numbers of land-based livestock too.

I used to work with a SS guy back home. His biggest priority was that everybody knew he was a member. Seriously wonder if he thought he was supporting Welsh independence.

-2 ( +3 / -5 )

Japan has to show some honesty about its scientific research.the image portrayed overseas is very different to living reality in japan.

Agree with you 100%

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

Whale is delicious. Ain't ashamed to say it either!

You should be as it tastes like rubber and is filled with mercury.

If whales are gonna be so easy to catch we should eat them all.

That may just be the worst post I have seen in all my years of reading JT. Jorge, cats are easy to catch too. You want to eat them all as well? Should conservationists arm whales so they can fight back? Wow, again, worst post ever.

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

In any case, it's also more proof that for Japan it's never about science when it comes to whaling -- it's only about soy sauce and mayonnaise.

Not even that, as only a minority of people eat whale. It's about saving face and not giving in to pressure

0 ( +2 / -2 )

Personally, I love very meaty and fatty whale bacon. It is really tasty meat.

-2 ( +2 / -4 )

Login to leave a comment

Facebook users

Use your Facebook account to login or register with JapanToday. By doing so, you will also receive an email inviting you to receive our news alerts.

Facebook Connect

Login with your JapanToday account

User registration

Articles, Offers & Useful Resources

A mix of what's trending on our other sites