Icelandic whaling company Hvalur has exported 500-600 tons of fin whale meat to Japan this year, according to the Japanese news agency Kyodo.
Fin whale processing at the whaling station in Hvalfjördur. Photo by Páll Stefánsson.
According to information from the Japanese Ministry of Finance, 164.1 tons of fin whale meat has been delivered to markets but the remaining meat is still waiting to be handled by customs, Morgunbladid reports.
Kyodo reports that around 4,000 tons of whale meat, mainly from minke whales, is sold in Japan every year but supply is more than demand. The Icelandic fin whale meat is believed to impact the price of whale meat.
CEO of Hvalur Kristján Loftsson is quoted as saying that the goal is not to push minke whale meat out of the Japanese market. He believes the fin whale meat from Iceland can have a positive effect on the market.
This year, 148 fin whales were killed in Iceland and 125 in 2009.