- The Plate
Why Whaling Persists in Japan, Despite International Pressure
On the island of Ikitsuki at the southern tip of Japan, a certain cut of meat is served up raw or cooked into a variety of dishes, just as it has been for centuries.
Rich in iron, fat, and protein, the local delicacy can be found in many restaurants on the island, and has been served in school lunches nationwide.
It’s not beef or fish—but whale. And its continued presence in the Japanese diet has global activists and conservationists fuming. Living in Japan, and seeing it sold and eaten nationwide, I decided to research why the Japanese cling to this practice.
On a recent trip to Nagasaki Prefecture, I visited the Ikitsuki Island Museum to find out more about whaling. The