Wednesday, May 6, 2009

European Embargo on Seal Products

It was announced yesterday that the European Community would no longer accept products made from seal, caught during the annual seal hunt, in Canada.

The embargo was put in place, on all seal products on May 5th, 2008. The decision had been voted on Tuesday, by the European Deputies, with 550 votes for the embargo and 49 against. The Parliamentary vote is yet to be taken by the governments of the European Union within the next several weeks. The prohibition will begin in vigor by the next seal hunting season.

This ban on seal products will not affect the Inuit Communities of Canada and Greenland, who can continue their traditional hunt. Of course, this decision depends entirely that they do not hunt a large scale seal hunt for the pelts, oils and meat of the seal for commercial purposes within the European Union.

Canada and Norway have already announced that they will contest this ban before the World Business Organization. The decision of the European Union came after the Canadian Prime Minister, Stephen Harper went to Prague, to participate in the launching of the negotiations of an economic partnership with the European Union.

The International Humane Society Organization is rejoicing the decision of the EU and views it as historic. “This ban marks the start of the end of the massacre of the seal of Canada, a massacre that the whole world disapproves of,” declared Rebecca Aldworth, director of the Canadian branch of the International Humane Society.

Joel Arseneau, mayor of the Iles-de-la-Madeleine, deplores the decision of the European Union. He had indicated that this prohibition would represent a challenge for the industry, which must now find other markets. Mr. Arseneau declared that he cannot immediately know the economic impact of this decision. The mayor of the Iles-de-la-Madeleine precisely said that the enterprises have already started to explore other sectors, such as those in the medical and pharmaceutical industries.


dickiebo said...

This is a tough call, isn't it? The whole world was shocked a few years ago by the pics of seals being beaten to death on the ice. However, clearly there is another side to the story and that, perhaps, needs the exposure that the other side had!

AngelBaby said...

I don't know what to think of this, do you have too many seals? Is this a way of thinning them out so they can survive better? I know they have a hunting season here in California for different animals because there are just too many and they need to be thinned out so they have enough food to eat. If that is the case where you are then why not allow the hunting?

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Love and Blessings,

Magdalen Islands said...
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Magdalen Islands said...

I hurt for those seal, but then I hurt for all who suffer for whatever reason. It looked bad for the seal to be clubbed but pigs are clubbed and slaughter animals too. There is one thing that is overlooked. A 22 rifle shot will go through a seal and ricochet off the ice, putting everyone in danger. This can be looked at two ways. First, club the seal and second not to be there in the first place. Many people here and else where use the seal as a food source. What is the difference between a pig and a seal, under these circumstances? I don't see a difference.

Anonymous said...


Peter said...

Joel Arseneau says "There are other practices done all over the world, particularly in Europe, that are basically very, very similar ... [but] the images are not available. You don't go into slaughterhouses and film, and get that all on TV screens and in the media."

If that is the case, those methods should also be banned. The method of slaughtering seals is disgusting, entirely indefensible.

Magdalen Islands said...

You are right, of course, Peter. When I think of the horrors that our domestic animals go through, that we are not supposed to think or talk about, I shudder and cry. We won't ever see the horrors of a slaughter house.
I don't pretend to know what is right and what is wrong with the slaughter methods. What one person finds disgusting is acceptable in the mind of another. So, who is right?