Icelandic brewery Steðji teamed up with whaling company Hvalur ehf. in the production of a new beer for the mid-winter festival of Þorrablót. The beer contains whale meal, which the manufacturers say is healthy making the beer full of protein, very low in fat and with no added sugar.
The Whale and Dolphin Conservation (WDC), however, has sharply criticized the move. “... Reducing a beautiful, sentient whale to an ingredient on the side of a beer bottle is about as immoral and outrageous as it is possible to get,” campaign leader Vanessa Williams-Grey said in a statement.
Last year, concerns over whale meat ending up in dog food abroad were raised. The brewery’s owner, Dagbjartur Árelíusson, told the Guardian that the beer would only be sold during the festival, which runs from January 24 to February 22, and is not being made for export. Dagbjartur said that the beer was made to accompany the cured food, including whale fat, which Icelanders have eaten at this time of year for centuries.