[MARINE_BIOLOGY_INTERNATIONAL] Promoting whale-eating culture in Japan


Japan promotes whaling after hunt called off


Captain Paul Watson-led Sea Shepherd Conservation Society's campaign forces Japan to cancel this season's research whaling.
Photograph by: Getty Images Archive, Calgary Herald

A group of seafood wholesalers in Tsukiji Market in Chuo Ward, Tokyo, hosted a meeting Saturday to raise awareness among themselves and the public about Japan's whaling history and its whale-eating culture.

Ginrin-kai, an incorporated non-profit organization, organized the event in co-operation with the town government of Taijicho, Wakayama Prefecture, Japan's main whaling port.

The meeting at Tsukiji Market comes after the government recently cancelled this season's research whaling due to anti-whaling activities of the Sea Shepherd Conservation Society.

Applications are being accepted from the public to participate in the event.

"We hope the Tsukiji meeting will give (participants) an opportunity to think about Japan's traditional culture of whale hunting and eating and will help disseminate information about our fish-eating culture," a Ginrin-kai member said.

Taijicho, depicted in the 2009 U.S. documentary film The Cove as a centre of dolphin and whale hunting, has attracted the attention of anti-whaling groups.

People in charge of wholesale firms in Tsukiji Market will talk about whale biology. Katsuhiko Ueda, a Fisheries Agency official, will speak about whale dishes.

Tsukiji Market handled about 220,000 kilograms of whale meat in 2010, compared with about 1.8 million in 1980, the year before commercial whaling was banned.

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