It was a shame to see that the Icelandic company Baugur has gone into administration. At a time when the Icelandic whaling industry is beating the nationalist drum, Jón Ásgeir Jóhannesson, head of Baugur was recently said (28th Jan) , “that the permission to go whaling until 2013 that was given by Fisheries Minister Einar K. Gudfinnsson could damage Iceland’s interests abroad”. Baugur had been a voice of opposition after being persuaded to oppose whaling by the UK NGO Campaign Whale
In stark contrast to Baugur is the Icelandic fishing company HB Grandi, which through shareholdings and shared directorships is linked to Iceland’s fin whaling fleet, the Hvalur hf company. Hvalur is run by business mogul Kristjan Loftsson, who also sits on the board at HB Grandi. Grandi exports a large amount of its fish to the UK, and it had allowed Loftsson to process fin whale meat in its Akranes fish processing plant in 2006. Loftsson and others have now mounted a massive public relations campaign in Iceland to try and promote whaling as a source of jobs, including the construction of a new whale meat processing plant in Akranes.
WDCS believes we should be supporting Icelandic whale watching companies and Icelandic companies that are willing to oppose whaling - they are the voice within Iceland that will end whaling once and for all, but lets oppose Grandi and their campaign to kill whales