EU consults on seal hunt

Harbor Seals Estero Bluffs ACanadian seal hunters are hoping EU bureaucracy delays the implementation of a Europe wide ban on the import of seal products following a report last month the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) that confirmed that sealers often do not comply with the Canadian regulations designed to minimise suffering. As a result many seals are skinned alive, hooked and dragged while conscious or left wounded for long periods.

Banning the import of seal product to the EU would have a significant impact on the commercial viability of the hunt and the ongoing debate in Canada.

And you can play a role in making that happen as the European Commission wants to know what you think. This public consultation is open until 13 February 2008. It only takes a moment to complete and most questions are optional; you can simply give your name and say you think seal products should be banned if you like. You might like to offer a view on an acceptable struck-and-lost ratio, that is the proportion of wounded seals you’re happy to see slink away while the hunter’s back is turned.

A flaw in the process is the apparent assumption that the rule of law will be respected by seal hunters to such an extent that they follow any regulation designed to minimise the seals’ suffering… the EU’s own food safety authority has found that simply doesn’t happen. Anything other than a ban is simply unenforceable.
Photo by Mike Baird. Used with permission. Some rights reserved.

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