Concerns over market for Icelandic whale meat in Japan

whaleArni Finnsson, chairman of the Nature Conservation Union of Iceland, said it will prove very expensive to get Icelandic fin whale meat to market in Japan. It is out of the question that the Icelandic government is in a position to supplement the whaling industry with the extra hundreds of millions of kronur it has cost and continues to cost the nation every year.

Finnsson said in an article today in Fiskifrettir that the upper limit of supply to Japan is 116.4 tonnes per year, or around 13 fin whales from Iceland – nearly twice as much as whaler Kristjan Loftsson exported there in May 2008, mbl.is reports.

Finnsson says that the Japanese government has for years been trying to breathe life into the country’s whale output with advertising campaigns, free recipe books, free whale meat supply to schools and retirement homes etc; but all with little success. Japan has since closed its whale marketing office since it failed to increase domestic demand.

Finnsson believes the market for Icelandic fin whale meat in Japan is already being filled by Japanese fin whale meat and that Kristjan Loftsson’s chances of widening the marketplace are slim while damage to Iceland’s international reputation is huge.

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