Icelanders Decidedly Shruggo About Whale Hunting - The Reykjavik Grapevine

Icelanders Decidedly Shruggo About Whale Hunting

Published May 30, 2018

Photos by
Art Bicnick

A new poll shows that the largest share of Icelanders are neither for nor against Iceland beginning whale hunting again.

The poll, conducted by Market and Media Research, asked respondents whether they support or oppose Iceland hunting whales again. This poll was taken in light of recent news that Iceland would begin hunting fin whales again after a two-year hiatus.

According to the results, those very supportive and somewhat supportive of whaling comprised 16% and 18% respectively. Those very opposed or somewhat opposed comprised 18% and 16% respectively. Meanwhile those who had no opinion either way comprised 31% of all respondents.

This is not due to Icelanders actually enjoying eating whale meat, either. The last poll done on the subject shows that less than 3% of Icelanders reported buying whale meat six times or more over the course of the year.

Rather, fin whale meat is exported to other countries, namely Japan. This has prompted considerable international opposition: the US government has said they may institute economic measures against Iceland because of whaling, and an international petition targeting Hvalur hf., Iceland’s premiere fin whale hunters, has garnered over a million signatures at the time of this writing.

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