Japanese fishermen hunting dolphins, Taiji, Japan

New footage of dolphin hunts in Taiji’s notorious cove

EIA investigators have just returned from Japan where their activities included documenting the killing and live capture of dolphins in Taiji’s notorious cove.

In the same region, they also looked into commercial sales of the dolphin meat derived from the kills through local supermarkets and obtained a number of samples to test for contamination with mercury.

Many Japanese citizens are unaware of the risks to human health of consuming cetacean meat, which is often contaminated with toxins at considerably higher levels than those officially recommended by the Japanese Government.

One aspect of EIA’s Oceans Campaign in Japan – alongside successfully persuading supermarket chains and such leading internet marketplaces as Amazon Japan, Google and Rakuten to stop selling all whale and dolphin products – is our work to make consumers aware of the human health risks as a means to driving down demand.

You can learn more about our work on this issue in the report Toxic Catch: Japan’s unsustainable and irresponsible whale, dolphin and porpoise hunts, available to read and download here.

Clare Perry, Head of EIA’s Oceans Campaign, said: “The conservation and welfare needs of wild dolphin populations in Japan are being entirely ignored in order to supply the captive dolphin industry and a limited demand for dolphin meat as a food source. Neither trade has any place in modern society.”