A victory for the whales

Feature story - January 13, 2006
Our Argentine Ocean Defenders have hit Nissui in their pockets. Nissui own about one third of Kyodo Senpaku -- the people who run the Japanese whaling fleet. Our cyber activists have convinced a major Nissui client in Argentina not to buy from a corporation involved in the killing of whales.

Despite the continued killing of whales by Japan there was some good news for whales when a Argentine seafood company canceled a contract with Nissui, a Japanese corporation involved in whaling.

As well as directly confronting the whaling fleet in the Southern Ocean we have been exposing how many well-known companies are linked to corporations involved in whaling. Internationally we have been focussing on Gorton's, but in Argentina the focus is on companies that do business with one of the corporations most closely linked to whaling in Japan, Nissui.

Nissui has Argentine subsidiaries that operate freezer trawlers, one of which is a surimi (type of minced fish) processor, which is sold in Argentina, Uruguay and Japan.


A popular seafood company in Argentina, Pesquera Santa Elena was using Nissui fish in its products. So we targeted Santa Elena to ask them to stop buying from Nissui and make it clear that whaling is bad for business.

In just 2 days over 21,000 cyber activists contacted the company and downloaded stickers to place on Santa Elena products in super markets, to highlight that the company was implicated in the killing of whales.

Remarkably quickly the president of Santa Elena was sitting at the table with us to negotiate. Faced with the possible damage to the companies public image from being linked to whaling it was an apparently easy decision to make.

Last week, Greenpeace Argentina got a signed commitment from the president of Santa Elena not to buy any more surimi from Nissui. The company even committed to donate about US$60,000 to an organisation working on whale conservation if they ever violate the agreement.

So one big client less for Nissui, and we are pressing other companies to follow suit. Maybe Gorton's can learn from Santa Elena's good example? In Argentina we are now focussing on other companies that buy from Nissui.

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