"What's The Point Of Whaling?" - The Reykjavik Grapevine

“What’s The Point Of Whaling?”

Published July 21, 2013

A boat from the International Fund for Animal Welfare (IFAW) in Iceland greeted a ship returning to Reykjavík harbour that was carrying fin whale meat turned back in mainland Europe.
As reported, whale meat that was originally bound for Japan via Hamburg was turned back, when Greenpeace tipped off German authorities over the contents of products on board a ship from Iceland. The ship was also turned away upon arriving in Holland. As a result, shipping company Samskip have decided to forgo attempting to export whale meat again.
IFAW Iceland decided to raise the question of what purpose whale hunting serves – directly.
Last night, a whale watching boat was deployed from Reykjavík harbour to greet the returning Samskip vessel – Pioneer Bay – which was coming back to Iceland with the 130 tonnes of fin whale meat that European authorities refused to let pass. Passengers on the whale watching boat, as can be seen in the above photo, held up signs asking, “What’s the point?” and its Icelandic translation, “Til hvers?”
In a statement to the press, IFAW Iceland representative Sigursteinn Másson said, “That the meat came all the way back to Iceland underlines the pointlessness of whale hunting, which continues at full steam, even though [whale hunting company] Hvalur hf. don’t have any way to export the meat by sea to Japan and it sits in freezers.”
Although there are other shipping companies besides Samskip, none so far have come forward expressing an interest in shipping the cargo.

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