Iceland Temporarily Suspends Fin Whale Hunting Just before the scheduled departure of the first ships, the Icelandic government has decided to temporarily suspend fin whale hunting. The decision was made due to concerns about the compatibility of hunting with animal welfare.
No Whales to be Hunted Around Iceland Until August 31st According to the Icelandic Ministry of Food and Fisheries, there will be no whale hunting around Iceland until August 31st. Doubts persist over whether the hunting methods used align with Icelandic animal welfare laws.
Hunt Method Not in Line with Icelandic Law An inspection report from the Icelandic veterinary authority concluded that the length of time it took to kill the animals during the last hunting season was too long. The expert council for animal welfare also assessed the hunting method for large whales being out of compliance with the law.
Continued Hunting Depends on Compliance with Animal Welfare Standards Minister of Fisheries Svandis Svavarsdottir stated that if the government and license holders could not ensure compliance with animal welfare standards, whale hunting would not have a future in Iceland. As per the expert council's recommendations, the start of the whale hunting season has been postponed.
Possibility of No Whales Caught This Year If the suspension of fin whale hunting continues, it could mean that there will be no whales caught around Iceland in 2022. Animal rights advocates view this as a turning point and could mean the end of Icelandic whale hunting.
Whales Exported to Japan Iceland is one of the few countries in the world where whales can still be hunted. In 2022, 148 fin whales were caught, and according to animal rights organizations, almost all whale meat is exported to Japan.