The Whale and Dolphin Conservation Society and Animal Welfare Institute are reporting that 24 of 31 restaurants catering to tourists in Greenland serve whale meat, a violation of the aboriginal subsistence exception to the moratorium on commercial whaling. The undercover investigation estimated that, of approximately 200,000 meals that were served to tourists last year, a significant proportion contained whale meat.
Previously, research showed wide availability of as much as a quarter of Greenland’s subsistence kill of whale meat for sale in markets, rather than being shared out in a traditional, noncommercial manner.
Meals the environmental investigators found available to tourists included whale burgers, buffets with whale meat for cruise ship passengers, whale pasta, and Thai and sushi dishes. While the Greenland population has only increased 10 percent in the last 25 years, Greenland’s and Denmark’s requests for increased “subsistence” hunting of whales have increased the number by 89 percent.
Environmentalists are asking the IWC to reject Greenland’s new request for increased quotas to kill endangered whales and instead review the basis of Greenland’s dubious “subsistence” whaling.