News Stories

Dining on Whale Meat

While dolphin hunting doc. wins Oscar - We recently posted an article about whales and dolphins being in danger and told about how a film about a Japanese dolphin hunt won the academy award for best documentary. It turns out that, despite this, a California restaurant served a group of Oscar nominees illegal sushi made of whale meat.

Using hidden cameras and tiny microphones, the Oscar-winning filmmakers of "The Cove" spied on the revelers, in cooperation with local law enforcement, and documented their dinner.

In the March 8th edition of the New York Times, Jennifer Steinhauer writes that "the sushi sting actually began in October, when the documentary's associate producer and 'director of clandestine operations,' Charles Hambleton, heard from friends in the music industry that the Hump, a highly rated sushi restaurant next to the runway at the Santa Monica airport, was serving whale. Hambleton created a tiny camera for two animal-activist associates to wear during the sushi meal."

The video of reveals that two of the guests, who both claim to be vegans, were served thick pink slices of what the waitress described as "whale." After taking a few bites, one of them, who is "spying" for Hambleton's team, slips them into a plastic bag she's carrying in her purse. They were later sent to researcher Scott Baker, who used DNA testing to ascertain that they were indeed whale meat, from an endangered species called the Sei whale, which is (ironically) hunted by the Japanese.

Steinhauer quotes Baker as saying, "I was pretty shocked."

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