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Whale meat is still consumed in Norway, Japan, Faroe Islands and by Inuit communities in several countries. Should we banned it completely for everyone?
Whales are the largest animals on earth. Men have been historically fascinated by whales but have also hunted them for oil, blubber, and for their meat. During the 19th century, new whaling technologies and the increasing demand for whale oil pushed the number of whale captures. Today there is little demand for whale oil but whale meat is greatly appreciated. The practice of human consumption of whale meat continues in Japan, Norway, Iceland, Faroe Islands, the Inuit and other indigenous peoples of the United States (including the Makah people of the Pacific Northwest), Canada, Greenland; the Chukchi people of Siberia, and Bequia in the Caribbean Sea. Whale meat is core to the identity and traditions of some communities. This is the case of the Inuit communities for which whaling has been a matter of subsistance for years. Arguably the impact of these communities is much smaller than that of rich countries with large modern fleets such as Japan and Norway, who are facing increasing pressures and criticism from the rest of the world to discontinue their whaling activities. The problem is that many types of whales are endangered as a result of whale hunting for meat.
Is the prohibition of whale meat the best solution to preserve whales? What about the native communities such as the Inuit for whom whaling and whale meat has been central to their identity and traditions for centuries? Could stricter regulation without total ban work?
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Should whale meat be completely banned worldwide, including for Inuits and other aboriginal communities?
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