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Old 03-18-2008, 04:52 PM   #1
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Whale

Yep, that's right. Whale.

I want to eat some. I know it's available in Japan and it's supposedly pretty tasty (often served either raw or in a nabemono-type hot pot), but does anyone know where to get it in the US? Is it illegal?


AFAIK most of the whale on the Japanese market is from a token few animals slain each year for research purposes, and thus I don't object to eating it.


I passed on trying horse in Canada while I was there, which I now also regret, but I imagine that it's easier to get horse than whale.

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Old 03-18-2008, 05:10 PM   #2
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"Brazen" Amateur is right. Sorry - but your reasons for not objecting to eating whale are sad & hollow at best.

Fortunately for the more environmentally concerned of us around here, whale meat is currently illegal in the U.S. except for certain indigenous arctic peoples. And the "whale is only slaughtered for research purposes" in Japan has been taken with a LARGE grain of salt for many years. Even many Japanese laugh about it.

Horsemeat is also not sold for consumption in the U.S.

Maybe you should think about moving?
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Old 03-18-2008, 05:22 PM   #3
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LOL!

I don't consider myself ecologically indifferent and I most certainly wouldn't want to see a return to wholesale commercial whaling. I would not be comfortable with eating it regularly or having it be a major American food staple, I just want to try it once.

I know it's got to already be out there somewhere, and I figure given that it obviously is, my wanting to try a couple bites isn't going to materially impact the survival of whales on planet earth.

I dunno, maybe I'm the only one with this curiosity. I guess it won't happen if it's outright illegal though. In regards to my comment regarding the "research whaling", I read that somewhere and I DID open with an "AFAIK" to bring attention to my being possibly misinformed.


This really wasn't intended to be a "shock" post, I just know that it's something some people on this planet eat, it's considered a delicacy, and I've never had it before. Those are really the only prerequisites for my wanting to try anything.
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Old 03-18-2008, 05:40 PM   #4
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The "people on this planet" (apart from the Japanese & their supposed & doubtful "research") who eat whale, are eating it (along with seal) because it is part & parcel of their very existence - not because someone with $$$ & curiosity wants to taste it. There's a big BIG difference.

And while I don't think your post was completely intended as a "shock" post, why wouldn't you just do an internet search if dining on whale &/or horse interests you so very much? Surely you'd get better info without upsetting those of us with a conscience.
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Old 03-18-2008, 05:56 PM   #5
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Honestly, I searched google and found very little information. I wasn't trying to upset anyone. The info I DID find pertained largely to how it is actually served in Japan and other countries that eat it.


I will say that my issues with eating it (or anything, for that matter) are rooted solely in it's sustainability. If it were sustainable/plentiful (which it obviously isn't), I wouldn't have a second thought about it.
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Old 03-18-2008, 06:42 PM   #6
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I am trying not to get in the middle of this.

There are two countries that do most of the whaling, Norway and Japan. I believe that, as Breezy said, Japan does it because of the wink wink nod nod research out and Norway was allowed to get a commercial fishery pass for some reason. Sounds like the International Whaling Commission really has not all that much power.

Norway's argument is that they are only harvesting minke whales, that are supposedly not endangered. From the numbers published it seems there are not all that many of them compared to the number taken. Should the population become under pressure for whatever reason, it could be in jeopardy. But I am no expert.

My own feeling, as someone who was for a few years an oceanographer, is leave the whales alone. If they become very plentiful, then take a look at harvesting them. But I am not a fan of the idea.

Have dealt with a number of dolphins, which are similar to whales (all cetaceans) and would not eat one no matter how plentiful they were. They are gosh darn smart animals.

But for countries that have for centuries lived on the meat, I would have a problem prohibiting it.

As much as I would want to.

Just my confused ideas on the subject.
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Old 03-18-2008, 07:02 PM   #7
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Quote:
I will say that my issues with eating it (or anything, for that matter) are rooted solely in it's sustainability. If it were sustainable/plentiful (which it obviously isn't), I wouldn't have a second thought about it.
But you've already stated in your initial post that you know it's not sustainable/plentiful - you just want to taste it to satiate your curiousity. If I were you I'd quit now before you might have to flip-flop again.
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Old 03-18-2008, 07:30 PM   #8
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No Breezy, BA did not state in the initial post that he knows it is not sustainable. And as for your post that told him to do some research on the internet instead of upsetting those of us with a conscience??? Did you forget that DC is on the internet so the OP did exactly what you are telling him to do???

I see nothing wrong with his post. He has a curiosity. He is not advocating whale hunting. He is simply saying that he is curious about what it tastes like. Breezy if you do not like the idea of this thread then turn the channel.
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Old 03-18-2008, 09:45 PM   #9
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Limiting my response to BrazenAmateur's original post:

Probably the only place you will find whale meat legally in the US is to mount an expedition to an Inuit village in Alaska - where you can probably also satisfy your curiosity about what seal meat taste like. Of course, it will be served in the traditional local style - not Japanese style.

Cheapest, and easiest, would be to fly to Iceland or Norway. There you could try minke whale - and even get it served in the Japanese style.

Then, there is always Japan - but you might just be getting frozen minke whale from Iceland - but it would be authentic Japanese preparation! And, who knows - you might luck out and get to try more than one species of whale.

Now, it "might" be possible to legally import some into the US - you're just going to have to spend a lot of time navigating the laws and regulations of about 40 different government agencies ... over 400 food importation laws ... filling out forms ... paying fees ... IWC regulations ... etc.

FWIW: What you can find on the internet is often only limited by what/how you look for it. Sometimes - it just takes asking the question in a different way - and taking the time to mine through the results - and then following up on leads you get.
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Old 03-19-2008, 07:58 AM   #10
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^^
Thanks for the very thorough response!

I'm not terribly concerned with the preparation being Japanese, I just want to try it. I hadn't thought of Iceland, I might actually be going there in the next year anyway.
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