Nov 24

Shutting down the seal hunt markets

The biggest blow to the sealing industry came in 2009 when the 27 nations of the EU joined the USA and Mexico in instituting a ban on the import of products derived from marine mammals. These products include skins, meat and oils from the commercial seal hunts

In 2011, Russia, Belarus and Kazakhstan followed up with a similar ban and early in 2013 Taiwan, the worlds 3rd largest importer of seal oils, also instituted a ban on such products due to the inherent cruelty involved.

The EU ban, which has survived several legal challenges, is still enforced and has seen the price of a seal pelt plummet from $130 to a mere $18. The number of seals brutally slaughtered in Canada has dropped from well over 200 000 to as few as 30 000.


With few markets left available to them, Canada and Namibia have turned  to ply their gruesome trade in China and Africa. Statistics reveal that South Africa (which has a moratorium on seal hunting) happens to be one of the markets that is being targeted by neighbouring Namibia.

  • #NEWS -Animal orgs approach #SouthAfrica to ban trade in marine mammal products #sealhunt

According to the United Nations, the trade in any animal listed on Appendix II of CITES needs to be carefully regulated with records being accurate and strictly controlled. Local and international trade statistics reveal that accurate records regarding the import and export of Cape Fur Seals (CITES Appendix II) are not being well maintained and there is no reliable way of telling if Omega 3 oils (used extensively by the health industry) are derived from the Namibian seal slaughter or from commercial fishing operations.

Working in collaboration with several organizations, a proposal, kindly compiled by HarpSeals.org has been sent to the South African government thanking them for the moratorium on seal hunting and urging them to become the first African nation to join the EU in instituting a trade ban on marine mammal products.


With South Africa already showing commitment to the protection of the marine environment, the banning of this trade would be the next natural step in ensuring a quality wildlife population for future generations. It would  also effectively shut down yet another market for what is undoubtedly one of the cruelest, most deceitful and iniquitous industries on earth.

The proposal has been endorsed by several leading organizations including, but not limited to

The proposal also has the backing of the following scientists who are regarded as leaders in their field of expertise.

  • Dr. Àlex Aguilar Vila, Full Professor, Vertebrates Unit, Department of Animal Biology, University of Barcelona, Spain
  • Prof. Rob Harcourt, Professor of Marine Ecology and Facility Leader, Australian Animal Tagging & Monitoring System, Department of Biological Sciences, Faculty of Science, Macquarie University, Sydney, New South Wales, Australia
  • Dr. Denise L. Herzing, Research Director, Wild Dolphin Project, 2008 Guggenheim Fellow, Affiliate Assistant Professor, Department of Biological Sciences and Department of Psychology, Florida Atlantic University, Boca Raton, Florida, U.S.A.
  • David M. Lavigne Ph.D., Dr. Philos., Marine Mammal Biologist, Guelph, Canada
  • Dr. Alan Springer, Research Professor, Institute of Marine Science, University of Alaska Fairbanks, Alaska, U.S.A.

Show YOUR support for this initiative by signing the petition HERE!!

keep calm poster