Latest figures (August 12th) from the Iceland Fisheries Directorate give a total of 89 fin whales killed by Kristjan Loftsson’s fleet so far this season.
Loftsson could slaughter as many as 184 fin whales under a self-allocated quota, but the rationale behind the hunt is looking increasingly shaky. There is no domestic market for fin whale meat in Iceland and exports are proving difficult. Last month, fin whale meat destined for Japan made it as far as Hamburg before being turned back, amidst a blaze of public protests, prompting two shipping companies, Evergreen Line and Samskip, to renounce carrying any further whale meat.
The returned containers of meat now sit in frozen storage for the foreseeable future, alongside numerous similar containers both in Iceland and Japan, and both fin and minke whalers are operating at a loss.