A Japanese whaling company has provoked a wave of criticism from animal rights activists over the installation of vending machines selling whale meat.

Kyodo Senpaku opened its first kujira (whale meat) stores at two locations in Tokyo this month following trials last year.

Japan’s whale meat vending machines provoke outrage

The vending machines have sparked outrage. Credit: Toshikazu Sato/AP

Customers can choose fro a variety of products including whale sashimi, whale steak and whale bacon, with prices ranging from AUD $10 (¥1000) to $33 (¥3000).

Kyodo Senpaku President Hideki Tokoro said at the launch that many major supermarkets are afraid of being harassed by anti-whaling groups so they won’t use whale.

“So there are many people who want to eat whale but can’t,” he said.

“Therefore, we are opening stores with the thought that we can provide a place where those people can eat.”

The move has been slated by animal rights campaigners, who labelled it a “cynical sales ploy”.

Astrid Fuchs, of Whale and Dolphin Conservation, said in a statement: “This latest cynical sales ploy comes at a time when the fisheries agency in Japan is aiming to expand the nation’s whale-catch quotas – and possibly increase the list of species that can be killed.”

Consumption of whale meat has declined since the 1960s as more traditional livestock including pork, chicken and beef has become more affordable.

Japanese customers ate 233,000 tonnes of whale meat in 1962, according to the country’s agriculture, forestry and fisheries ministry.

In 2021 the Japanese consumed just 1,000 tonnes of whale meat.

Japan’s whale meat vending machines provoke outrage

Japanese customers ate 233,000 tonnes of whale meat in 1962, by 2021 annual intake had plunged to 1000 tonnes. Credit: Eugene Hoshiko/AP

The vending machines have been introduced as part of a drive to encourage the Japanese public to eat more whale meat.

Kyodo Senpaku spokesman, Konomu Kubo, said: ‘Sales have outstripped our expectations, even though the products aren’t exactly cheap,.

“Some of the items have sold out.”

NEWS RELATED

Italy on alert as anarchists attack diplomatic missions

Italy’s government has increased security at its diplomatic missions around the globe in response to “a crescendo of terroristic attacks” by an informal anarchist network acting in solidarity with an imprisoned Italian militant, the foreign minister said Tuesday. Foreign Minister Antonio Tajani cited nearly a dozen attacks since the end ...

View more: Italy on alert as anarchists attack diplomatic missions

Alec Baldwin, ‘Rust’ armorer formally charged in Halyna Hutchins’ death

Alec Baldwin was formally charged Tuesday with involuntary manslaughter in the death of Halyna Hutchins. Maurizio Dell’Amore/MEGA Alec Baldwin has officially been charged with involuntary manslaughter in the shooting death of cinematographer Halyna Hutchins on the set of “Rust,” officials announced Tuesday. The “30 Rock” actor, 64, and Hannah ...

View more: Alec Baldwin, ‘Rust’ armorer formally charged in Halyna Hutchins’ death

Federal Treasurer says he’s concerned about the impact of mortgage changes

Federal Treasurer Jim Chalmers has hinted at further cost-of-living relief as the government fears more Australians will face further financial stress when their mortgages change this year. “We are very concerned about people coming off fixed rates on to much higher variable rates,” he told ABC 7.30 on Tuesday. “That ...

View more: Federal Treasurer says he’s concerned about the impact of mortgage changes

Australian mining company loses radioactive device, nuclear agency joins outback search

Australian authorities have deployed more personnel and specialized equipment as they continue searching for a small radioactive capsule that fell off a truck somewhere in the Outback. “Today’s delivery will further boost our search efforts and complement the equipment we have been using since the search started last Thursday,” Darryl ...

View more: Australian mining company loses radioactive device, nuclear agency joins outback search

Dwellingup 100: Annual event to welcome Oceania Mountain Bike Championships to WA

The inaugural Oceania Mountain Bike Marathon Championships will make its way to WA in 2023 as part of the hugely popular local event, the Dwellingup 100. Riders from all over the Oceania region are expected to take part in the championships on September 16, 2023. Participants will compete against each ...

View more: Dwellingup 100: Annual event to welcome Oceania Mountain Bike Championships to WA

Line-up of exciting entertainment promised for Mandurah Fringe Festival

Fringe Festival is set to return to Mandurah this month with a range of exciting ticketed shows and events at bars, restaurants and cafes. The Mandurah Fringe Festival will serve up an array of great entertainment — many from Perth’s Fringe World event — from February 8-14, including comedy, music ...

View more: Line-up of exciting entertainment promised for Mandurah Fringe Festival

Vera Liddell allegedly stole $1.5M in chicken wings from Illinois schools

This is not the way to get ready for the Super Bowl. The food service director of an impoverished Illinois school district was charged with stealing $1.5 million of food — most of which was chicken wings. Vera Liddell, 66, alleging began stealing from the Harvey School District during the heigh of ...

View more: Vera Liddell allegedly stole $1.5M in chicken wings from Illinois schools

Dems question Kamala Harris as future president: ‘Don’t know she has what it takes’

Some Democrats are questioning whether Vice President Kamala Harris has the political chops to carry the party’s mantle after President Biden, citing her low-profile in the administration, her well-publicized stumbles with the media and the rough-and-tumble political environment, according to a report.  “Every fiber in my body wants her to ...

View more: Dems question Kamala Harris as future president: ‘Don’t know she has what it takes’

Oldham Coliseum will go dark due to 100% Arts Council England funding cut

Baby Boomers most likely to create electric car boom

Australians roll up their sleeves for cancer patients

Fears for European airline as all flights are cancelled today

The hit European holiday destination of 2023 is giving tourists an extra night for free

The abandoned English airport with plans to relaunch budget flights to Spain, Netherlands & Cyprus

I tried out the travel pillow that’s gone viral – here’s what I really thought

I flew to Italy for a pizza – even with my flight it cost less than a Domino’s

Is it illegal to be drunk on a plane? Flight regulations explained

Seven British roads rich in history and beauty

Will more airlines follow Flybe into the history books?

How to survive your first family holiday abroad

OTHER NEWS