New Zealand company, Sealord, associated with whaling!

Steve O'Shea

TONMO Supporter
Staff member
Nov 19, 2002
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Group fires at Sealord over whaling link
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Whales being pulled onto a boat
Nov 27, 2005

An American activist group is calling for a boycott of New Zealand's largest seafood company, Sealord, because one of it's major shareholders is involved in Japan's whaling programme.

Earth Island Institute wants the Sealord group to disassociate itself from it's Japanese partner Nissui because of it's involvement in Japan's controversial scientific whaling programme.

Earth Island is the second-most powerful marine activist group in America.

"You can't really save the whales if Nissui's out there killing them at the same time you're buying Sealord products," says Mark Berman, the Associate Director of Earth Island Institute.

"Nissui is a whale killing company - it's on paper. It's a well known fact they have a cannery that produces cans of whale meat," says Berman.

Sealord is 50% owned by several Maori shareholder groups, and the Japanese own the other half.

The relationship between Sealord and Nissui began in 2002.

Sealord's Chief Executive Doug Mckay confirmed any dividend payments are shared 50-50 with their Japanese partner, but says Earth Island's threats are unjustified.

"Sealord does not have a problem with what Nissui does in it's own patch," says McKay.

"(Nissui) are one of the industry participants in their Japanese government's scientific research programme on whaling, which is well-canvassed, well-debated (and) well-understood through the International Whaling Commission," says Mckay.

Earth Islands claim that the Japanese government's programme is bogus, and will be asking shoppers for support. Consumers are being urged to tell the owners of stores not to stock it on the shelves

Doug McKay is calling the conservationists' campaign - which is planned for the new year - "commercial terrorism".
...... and more bad news for another New Zealand company, Sanford! Today

Sanford profits down 44pct to $30.4m
Exchange rate needs to drop below 60c
Sanford [NZX:SAN] has reported a massive $23.5 million drop in profit for the year to 30 September, down 44 per cent to $30.4 million from $53.9 million last year.

That despite sales revenues of $365.8 million, an increase of 4.4 per cent over last year.

The company said it found itself in the same net as most exporters, strangled by the high dollar and high fuel costs.

"The ongoing high value of the New Zealand dollar coupled with record high fuel prices continues to seriously impact on fishing and aquaculture profitability.

"Results from our Pacific tuna and expanded Australian operations were well below expectations and a slow-down in the North American orange roughy market impacted sales and profitability in the latter part of the year.

"Results from the acquisition of the Simunovich scampi and inshore fishing operations were in line with expectations but catch and profitability targets for the Ocean Fresh business in Australia and the Ocean Breeze tuna operation in the Pacific were not met," the company said.

"The high level of the New Zealand dollar resulted in foreign exchange gains which totalled $40.4 million (before tax) this year compared with $55.2 million last year.

"At 30 September 2005 forward cover of $13.5 million remained with a potential gain of $5 million that will be realised by the end of November 2005," the company said.

Net cash flows from operating activities decreased from $59.5 million last year to $40.7 million.

"Investing in the purchase of assets and subsidiaries (mainly from Simunovich Fisheries Limited) took $176.1 million which was financed from borrowings and cash flow," the company said.

The company said for every $US1 change in the barrel price of fuel, profitability was trimmed by approximately $100,000 NZD.

Sanford also took a swing at government regulators, saying the industry "continues to be impacted by constant escalation of Government imposed charges on the industry without any consideration on the economic impact on the industry.

"Costs of fisheries and conservation services that are levied on the industry increase despite the large decrease in hoki quota.

"Other Government costs such as ACC levies, maritime and food safety charges, border and biosecurity charges, road user fees, and OSH charges continued to escalate despite our declining earnings because of the high New Zealand dollar.

Sanford said exchange rates above 60 cents would make 2006 a difficult year, with profits likely to fall even farther.

"In the current exchange rate environment and without further forward cover it will be very difficult to reach this year's result. For Sanford Limited a 1 cent variation in the exchange rate changes our tax-paid profit by $1 million."
:mad: That's horrible!

They sound as lif they have nothing to do with whaling while they Japanese counterparts/partners go and harpoon whales!
And sure...."commercial terrorism"....they're crazy.

I do not put the blame on Sanford, but maybe the orange roughy was never meant to be harvested and on that hoki quota, sure overfishing for years has absolutly NOTHING to do with the current situation.
Just reading the articles quickly (and watching the wee video)...

I have to say the PR dude who came up with the concept of "commercial terrorism" is a frikkin' genius! In today's world of "war against terror" and random bombings, nothing strikes more the public mind than the mention of terrorism. Somebody finds who that guy is and makes him/her work for us!
*grabs pliers and blow torch*
Just waiting for a name and adress!

As much as i agree with the uproar about sealord being owned by and sharing profits with the japanese whailing industry, i can't help but feeling slightly bemused that american environmentalists take upon themselves to create such a noise about it when there are environmental issues at least as bad as on their own soil/waters. Personally i have never heard of this group before today...

But hey, whatever works as they say :wink:

Oh, talk to Sorseress about that one. American environmentalists are pretty damn obsessive about what's taking place on the home front as well.
TPOTH said:
I have to say the PR dude who came up with the concept of "commercial terrorism" is a frikkin' genius! In today's world of "war against terror" and random bombings, nothing strikes more the public mind than the mention of terrorism. Somebody finds who that guy is

Tiz no different from the 'environmental terrorism' that we have accused them of. I'd say they haven't a creative bone in their pointy little head! They cannot differentiate economic from ecological sustainability.
Its gonna be great to see what happens to Sealord - I thought the "we have no problems with...." comment was pretty shocking.

Thankfully mosty New Zealanders are horrified by whaling, and I'm sure that when the campaign starts there will be some "problems" down at Sealord head office.

For those who havent heard of Sealord, they basicially make the vast majority of seafood products down here - so it's big money.

I think that Sealord will have a hard time claiming that the International Whaling Commission's allowance for "scientific research" isnt obviously used for commercial purposes - when the New Zealand government openly opposes and exposes such practises.
When the NZ government views something as "bogus", and criticises the Japaneese government(a HUGE trading partner) - it's very definately a serious issue -
Perhaps some good ol' commercial terrorism will help Sealord grow a few vertabrae, although how they are supposed to criticise a company that owns 50% of their shares - I have no idea.
Feelers said:
Perhaps some good ol' commercial terrorism will help Sealord grow a few vertabrae, although how they are supposed to criticise a company that owns 50% of their shares - I have no idea.

veeeeeery carefully! :lol: Personally I don't think they'll develop the backbone......the great god $$$$ is too powerful for most companies to ignore :sad:

Having been lucky enought to witness Sir G. Palmers speech at the Sea Change 05 conference last week, I have grave fears for cetaceans.

Unfortunately Japan has been buying votes and it is very likely that full-scale commercial whaling is on the cards in the very near future.
I personally do not support whaling, but I do feel that tell the Japanese that "whaling is wrong" is not going to work. Whaling is not about all about food, it's also a part of their culture and telling that their culture us wrong is like smacking them right in the face.

There must be a balance between perserving traditions and saving the whales, right?

They're STILL killing dolphins in Wakayama? I thought that international public outcry banned that!

I had a buddy from Japan who told me about it. Its not popular in Japan either, but videotaping the slaughter has become taboo to the point that if you videotape it, you're bound to get your tail kicked.


Well, on the bright side, the Ling cod have made an excellent recovery off the coast here. Crab season has been pushed back due to smaller crabs a few hundred kms north of here, but our crabs are excellent. Lotta happy octopuses about that decision I'm sure.

That's sick!!

Well at least mercury poisoning will eventually get all the people who eat the dolphins.

I cant imagine slaughtering such a friendly animal, although I spose I shoot rabbits.

It is unfortunate that Japan has a kind of censorship on their news programs ect.
I dont think many Japaneese would approve either, had they seen the footage.

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