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Whaling battle shifts from seas to supermarket

Anti whaling battle shifts from high seas to supermarket shelves

Sydney: Greenpeace will leave the Southern Ocean today and will take the battle to stop whaling from the high seas to the supermarket shelves around the world.

As the Arctic Sunrise and the Esperanza prepare to leave the region for Cape Town, Greenpeace is calling on everyone who cares about ending the whale hunts to use their consumer power to send a strong message to the fishing companies that finance the whaling industry. In Australia the campaign will target Sealord, which supplies tinned, frozen and fresh fish products to supermarkets and fast food restaurants.

Greenpeace CEO Steve Shallhorn said, “We’re shifting the campaign focus from the high seas to the supermarket shelves. We’re asking consumers to be aware of who funds the whale hunters, and to let them know that whaling is bad for business,” he said.

Greenpeace encourages people to contact Sealord, a New Zealand-based fishing company that is 50% owned by the Japanese company Nissui, who are directly linked to Japan’s commercial whaling. Nissui is a major shareholder of Kyodo Senpaku, the company which owns Japan’s whaling fleet. Nissui also market and sell the whale meat throughout Japan.

Mr Shallhorn said, “We’d like people to send a message to Sealord’s headquarters in New Zealand, asking them to persuade Nissui to bring the hunting of whales to a permanent end.

“People wishing to take action should visit our website at for details on how to take action and become an Ocean Defender,” he said.

Greenpeace Southern Ocean Expedition Leader Shane Rattenbury said, “Logistically we cannot remain in the Southern Ocean any longer, but this certainly isn’t the last you’ll hear of us.

“The 57 crew on both Greenpeace ships want to thank everyone who has supported our work down here by writing letters of support to newspapers and websites, and also to thank our millions of individual financial supporters around the world. It's thanks to our new faster ship, the Esperanza, that we were able to keep up with the whalers the whole time, and we couldn't be down here without that support.

“For a month now we have dogged, delayed and disrupted the whaling fleet in the Southern Ocean Whale Sanctuary, and have no doubt that they have fallen far behind in their bid to slaughter 935 minke whales and 10 endangered fin whales. It is our hope that this struggle will inspire people to help us defend whales, so that it goes down in history as the last time the peaceful silence in the Sanctuary is broken by the sound of a grenade-tipped harpoon,” Mr Rattenbury said.

The Esperanza will continue the year long 'Defending our Oceans' voyage, the single largest expedition that Greenpeace has ever undertaken. For more information on the voyage, visit

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