Conservationists outrage after Icelandic brewery announces plans to sell beer made from WHALE
- Icelandic brewery Brugghús Steðja is making beer with whale meal
- Steðja has teamed up with whaling company to make brew for ‘real Vikings’
- Environmentalist group outraged at risk to endangered fin whale
By Sara Malm
PUBLISHED: 17:08 GMT, 8 January 2014 | UPDATED: 18:40 GMT, 8 January 2014
An Icelandic brewery is launching a beer containing dead fin whales, claiming it is a ‘healthy low-fat alternative’.
Brugghús Steðja has teamed up with whaling company Hvalur to launch the 5.2% beer, produced in time for the Icelandic mid-winter festival.
Environmentalist groups are outraged as they believe the beer poses a threat to the endangered fin whale.
The conservation group’s Icelandic whaling campaign leader Vanessa Williams-Grey said: ‘Demand for this meat is in decline, with fewer and fewer people eating it.
‘Even so, 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.
‘The brewery may claim that this is just a novelty product with a short shelf life, but what price the life of an endangered whale which might have lived to be 90 years?’
Its launch is timed to coincide with the Icelandic mid-winter festival of Torrablst (Thorrablot) held in honour of the Norse god, Thor.
Brewery owner, Dabjartur Arilmusson, declared: ‘This is a unique beer, brewed in collaboration with Hvalur. Whale beer will include, among other things, whale meal.’
The brewery also states that the beer is a healthy drink because ‘whale meal is very protein rich, and has almost no fat in it.’
‘That, along with the fact that no sugar is added makes this a very healthful drink, and people will be true Vikings drinking it.’
Asked if he was concerned that the product would fall foul of anti-whalers, he commented: ‘Doubtless some people won’t like it, there is a certain risk and we are aware of that, but we hope Icelanders will like it as we’re naturally addressing it to Thorrablot, when people eat and drink various things which they normally wouldn’t.’
Last year, the Whale and Dolphin Conservation helped expose the use of endangered fin whales in dog food, and the use of fuel made from dead fin whales to power Hvalur’s own hunting vessels.