Major Seal Buyer Says No Mas to More Seal Pelts

By on April 15, 2015 with 40 Comments By Wayne Pacelle

Yesterday Carino Processing Ltd – Canada’s oldest and largest seal fur buyer – stated that the company has turned down $1 million in government funding for seal pelt purchases, noting that it already has pelts in storage that it cannot sell.

This is a very significant and forbidding development for the sealers, in the wake of $2 million of government financing pledged to Carino and one other processor to purchase seal products. We had anticipated sealers would rush to the ice floes to cash in on the government’s effort to keep the hunt alive, but the effect of the Carino decision is to put the brakes on much of the sealing. Even Eldridge Woodford, the president of the Canadian Sealers Association, stated yesterday that, for the first time in 20 years, he won’t participate in the seal slaughter because of the lack of buyers for seal products.

Carino, a Norwegian-owned, Newfoundland-based company, has been the backbone of the commercial sealing industry over the past five decades, purchasing the skins of more than one million clubbed and shot baby seals in that time. Carino’s announcement, paired with its acknowledgement that it is warehousing a stockpile of seal fur it has been unable to sell, demonstrates that even increased government largesse, on top of other efforts to prop up the hunt, cannot keep it from foundering.

As a result of this announcement, the closing of markets throughout the world, and the devaluing of pelts because of the glut in supply of the product, the killing season of seals has gotten off to an exceptionally slow start – and that’s a good thing. The Canadian government confirms that sealers have killed about 2,000 animals in the first two days of the sealing season – a decade ago, that number would have been closer to 100,000.

In 2008, there were reportedly five companies processing the skins of clubbed and shot baby seals year round. But in 2009, our documented evidence of cruelty in the commercial seal hunt helped convince the European Union to join the United States in banning the commercial seal product trade. Seal fur prices in Canada crashed and kill levels plummeted correspondingly.

Since then, more key markets, including Russia and Taiwan, have closed their borders to the primary products of the commercial seal hunt, and prices for seal fur have remained low. As a result, in the past few years alone, more than 1.8 million baby seals have been spared a horrible fate.

The only processor buying seal fur this year is a new enterprise, PhocaLux International. The company is claiming that it is in the process of developing new markets for seal products in China. Yet, after more than three decades of taxpayer funded, multi-million dollar efforts to promote seal products there, China has never materialized as an important market for the sealing industry.

Encouraging fishermen to make economic decisions based on empty promises serves no one but the executives of the seal processing plants. It is time for the Canadian and Newfoundland governments to transition to a humane economy and stop wasting taxpayers’ money on the outdated, globally condemned slaughter of baby seals.

Protect baby seals from slaughter »

Humane Society International, Wildlife/Marine Mammals

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  1. Stephanie Budin says:

    Please, PLEASE let this be the end of it!

  2. David Bernazani says:

    I never knew there was such a thing as the Canadian Sealers Assiciation, but there is. They even have a Facebook page– with a whopping 41 likes! And they are open to comments, so I pasted a link to this page, and suggested that it’s time they gave up and went home.

    • Nancy Katz Triplett says:

      Great idea! I just did the same thing!

    • Annette says:

      This hunt is so barbaric it’s shocking to me why in the world it’s continuing. Why the Hell is Harper still supporting this when he knows dam well that we as Canadians are against the slaughter? We have no right as people of the planet to be out there killing species like this for any reason.

      Stop the slaughter of Seals, it’s wrong on so many levels.

      Annette Glendenning
      Pickering Ontario

      • Kate says:

        It’s great to see a Canadian weigh in on this. Hopefully people in Canada (if they aren’t already) will start speaking out very loud to the government to STOP seal hunts. Forever. Period. Thanks Annette

        • Joanna says:

          Kate and Annette believe me some of us have been trying to close down the seal slaughter for many, many, many years! Protesting, marching, writing to several Prime Ministers, donating, singing petitions year after year. Seeing our hard earned tax money given to prop up the terrible slaughter, we assume to gain votes for the politicians in power at the time. All to no avail. Fortunately loss of markets world wide are doing what our politicians refuse to do “save the seals”

          • Joanna says:

            “Signing” petitions …..I meant … And I am a Canadian. Even got an answer to one protest letter from Prime Minister Trudeau who supported the seal slaughter telling me that he felt people concentrated too much on the actual killing of the pups and not the Financially good outcome!!!!!’

        • Debrah says:

          We have been asking our various governments for years! But governments don’t listen so it’s taken this long to outlive the market. Yahoooo! End of sealing is nigh!

      • mizjacka5jac says:

        Lord sweet Jesus.. how could these damn human beings do that to the sweet precious animals, and the animals can’t even run away while they’re beating then to death!!Lord sweet Jesus we’re in trouble! because if we allow these folks to do what it is they’re doing to these precious animals of God, the next thing that they will start beating to death and killing will be human beings!! “US”..Lord sweet Jesus help these animals…

    • Julie says:

      What a sad terrible job-what kind of person thinks this is ok ?????

    • Rosemary Lowe says:

      Great, thanks! The slaughter of remaining wild animal populations around the planet are in severe decline, not only from human-caused climate change, but from the ubiquitous Trophy Hunting as well. This has been a well-kept secret for too long. Despite claims by hunters that they hunt for “food to put on the table,” the majority of wild animal slaughter is due to Trophy Hunting. It is time to stop this cowardly, barbaric activity. How many people know that the America had lions (like in Africa), giant sloths, elephants, giraffes, dire wolves & many other large fauna, up to 13,000 years ago. They all were exterminated by early humans.

      • Rosemary Lowe says:

        Sorry, but my lst sentence should read: “the slaughter of remaining wildlife populations around the world continues at an alarming rate, and they are in severe decline, because of Trophy hunting…”

    • Rosemary Miller says:

      I will also email them . Stephen Harper P.M. continues to prop up this Seal Hunt. He spends millions of Taxpayers money attempting to persuade Countries around the World to once again start buying Seal products. He has now given the go ahead to grind up body parts of Seals, mainly the penis to export to Asian countries for Aphrodisiacs. When Harper & his Government are defeated, only then will our Seals be safe from slaughter !

  3. BarbG says:

    Its about time this bloody slaughter was shut down. You wonder just what is it with the Canadian government that they use taxpayer money to hang onto a dying business? What has really shut this down is the public seeing it up close and personal themselves and are stunned at the cruelty involved in the killing of these seals. Why hasn’t the government used the money to help retrain these fishermen for other occupations?? Its the same mindset that Japan had with killing whales even with tons of whale meat stored and the younger population not eating it the government still used taxpayer money to finance the whaling ships until the whaling was stopped.

    • Rosemary Lowe says:

      Sea Shepherd Conservation Society, the anti-whaling groupwho blocked Japan many years, from getting their “quotas of whales,” is still watching, and has no plans to leave Antarctic waters without protection, until they absolutely know that Japan will no longer kill whales. It is an unanswered question at this time.

    • Kate says:

      They can’t call themselves fishermen. No comparison. They’re bloody murderers. Fishermen catch fish not mammals and they aren’t clubbed to death. I agree as to what is the gov’t thinking? Obviously they aren’t.

  4. Christine says:

    Love this!!!!!!

  5. Shaunie Prince says:

    Why in God’s name would the Canadian government subsidize this in the first place? Just sickening and so very sad.

  6. M. Denise Corcoran, DVM says:

    Finally some progress, but I can’t believe how long it has taken. I first became involved in this cause over 40 years ago when I wrote my first letter to the Canadian Prime Minister — I was obey 9 years old at the time!

    • Diana says:

      I too was involved in ending this barbarity when I was but a kid. I recall collected signatures for the IFAW while still the 4th grade, over 40 years ago

  7. Ron & Marian Glass says:

    Thank you for finally trying to end this yearly Horror show!!!

  8. M. Denise Corcoran, DVM says:

    Finally some progress, but I can’t believe how long it has taken. I first became involved in this cause over 40 years ago when I wrote my first letter to the Canadian Prime Minister — I was only 9 years old at the time!

  9. Diana Owen says:

    I am Maliseet First Nations.
    My mother always taught us that we are no greater than the dirt, to the grass, to the waters, to the trees, to the all land and water, animals to the sky to Creator.
    We are equal to every grain on Mother Earth .
    Even before 1492 in America there were others that came to distroy the Vikings and Black Robes.
    Even way back then the First Nations told all that came of the connections of all that are on the Earth. If you keep distroying it, controling it ,abuse it , Negelect it , Own it ,distroy it ,you will lose it for generation!!!

    What will it take for you people who feel the need to be greater by distroying another beings .
    Who are you to be greater than Creator !

    In my 46 yrs in borrowed life.
    I have grown to old to keep telling you distroyers to stop.
    Now I am to the point of doing Crazy Horse to Custard on your asses!
    If you do not hear us in this life time ,you will in the next life !

    I have spoken and grown tired of your of your need to control, abuse ,negelect, Own and distroy!

    • Jane Fong says:

      Thank you, Diana. You speak wisely, the World has no appreciation for creatures, who have a heartbeat, like you and I. No sympathy for those who bleed blood, like you and I. Give a guy a gun, and he thinks he or she, can shoot ANYTHING. Just having a gun, DOSENT MAKE IT A SPORT! Olympics are sports. Not shooting animals. Be their voice.

  10. PAMELA MASICH says:


  11. Adrienne Bishop says:

    This is exciting news! The end to this slaughter cannot come soon enough.

  12. Kenny Cochran, Professional Firefighter, IAFF union local #452 says:

    I first learned of the Canadians, Norwegians and Russians killing Harp Seal pups, juveniles and adults back in 1968 through Brian Davies org IFAW.
    Hooded seals have also been killed over the years. Because the Harps are
    pelagic and use the ice pack to give birth, they are vulnerable to humans and
    now the effects of global warming, specifically shrinking ice pack. North Atlantic
    fish are depleted and disappearing at an alarming rate. Overfishing is the reason
    but Harp Seals are to blame. The Harps main food supply has been the Capelin fish, but they too are disappearing, so the Harps are now in survival mode.
    In 1977 as a member of API, I went out on the Gulf of St Lawrence ice pack to see the Harp Seals…alive and dead. Brian Davies and his group were there, as well as a group of Hollywood celebs. All of us trying to make some sense of the killing and hopefully to make a difference. I went back out on the same ice pack in 1980, this time as an undercover member of GreenPeace. New rules emerged
    because Canadian officials were in hot water over the hunt. Protesting the hunt was banned, flying restrictions were in force, no touching of seals but okay
    for hunters to bash their skulls. Some baby seals were skinned alive, and many adult mothers were killed protecting their babies.
    Nearly fifty years ago, Brian Davies exposed Canada’s shame to the rest of the
    world. I figured it would be over by now and tourism would be a new money
    maker for that region.
    Lots of talk from government agencies over the years (including HSUS), but
    no action. Like the Walrus’s of Walrus Island, the Harp Seals will disappear.
    I tried, I really tried…

    When the last individual
    of a race of living beings
    breathes no more,
    another heaven and another earth must pass
    before such a one can be again…
    William Beebe

  13. barbara says:

    i have to really wonder how anyone could look into the eyes of a helpless animal and beat it to death.

  14. Leanne Hildebrand says:

    I too have been fighting the seal slaughter for over 40 years after seeing a horrific IFAW TV ad/PSA. I was so appalled that I immediately wrote for the petition kit and haven’t stopped since in spreading the word. Always an animal lover this was what got me actually involved in the animal rights movement. The seals have always been my “pet” cause though never imagining that 40 years later it would still be an issue. I vowed to live long enough to see an end to the hunt – thankfully it may happen. Now if we can end the ivory trade …….

  15. Anne Davis says:

    I am so glad that finally things are being set in motion to stop these horrendous slaughters!!! It makes me smile to see all the comments of others like myself against this awful practice!! It’s just my personal opinion…but I truly believe that those who are doing the hunting and slaughtering should suffer some kind of consiquence similar to their own actions!! Let’s bash their head or their child’s head in and see how they like that!! It’s heartless and cruel…but it all boils down to the human race thinking we are superior and better than everyone else…No human decency. There is absolutely nothing right or humane about the torture and slaughtering of any other animal species. They may not be able to speak but they do feel pain and fear. This has to end. Thank you to everyone who has commented and tried to make a difference. I wish there were more people out there with your same ideals and ideology!!! Let it end. Forever

  16. Corinne says:

    There is no need for this when they have faux furs that look and feel so real. 2000 is still too many. One would be too many.

  17. Felicity Brach says:

    It was so heartening to read all the comments, & to know I am in such excellent company, with the same interllect. I remember, Brian Davis, from years ago, and being so horrified when I first heard about the seal killings. Also, the dog meat trade. It made me into the extreme activist I am today.

  18. Donna Lysinger says:

    I thought the people in canada & animal cop’s & animal rescue went & sprayed these seal pup’s so the fur wouldn’t sell. The stuff they sprayed was safe. I would use kool aid it would be safe or something that wouldn’t freeze on the pup’s fur to hurt them. The people in canada could may be put this no killing of these thing’s on a ballot it & when they vote & vote no more killing & if caught fine them & tap there pay check, & prison, loose there job’s this could work hopefully for poaching animal’s & killing & abuse of animal’s or creatures on land sea or air. .

  19. Evelyn Lennon says:

    It sickened me to hear and see such brutal and horrid pictures of defenceless baby and adult seals. We are their voice, let’s be heard.

  20. Marcia Huyette says:

    Thank you, HSUS for staying the fight to end this gruesome, cruel and sad practice. In this day and age, there are readily available fake furs. All we have to do now is change the minds and hearts of people who think it’s OK to kill a creature for its pelt. Once again Greed and Profit cloud the minds of humans. I can only hope we all continue to evolve into a more compassionate species.

  21. Jessica says:

    As a Canadian I want others to know that there are many of us who oppose this horrific slaughter. It is deplorable! Our government however is just as corrupt as any other and will not listen to the countless protests or petitions because they have a financial interest in robbing us through our tax dollars to fund these crimes (and they are crimes) because all of the officials including our new Prime Minister get “gifts” from it, even when there is overwhelming evidence that it costs more money than the ROI it produces. Effectively, even the WORLD pressure falls on deaf ears because of these greedy politicians who are only care about their wallets. In addition, they use their power and money to push their propaganda that this hunt is good for Canada and even necessary – that somehow the seals will outnumber us otherwise and that fishermen will go starving without this business. This message sadly works on many ignorant Canadians so I understand why many of the awakened people start to hate this country for it. We are a socialist country, not a democratic one as they like to pretend it is. The government raises taxes without any vote or consent from the public on a yearly basis, and there is nothing we can do about it. Our goods & sales tax on everyday items continues to increase and we just have to accept it. I won’t even get into what this country has done to the First Nations. This country is full of innocent blood – crimes against humanity and innocent animals continues to go on. I am glad the rest of the world is realizing what this country is about. If we keep voting for corrupt leaders, nothing will change. We are not progressive, we are just passive posers who actually oppose change. I encourage all organizations and all individuals to expose the truth about Canada as it’s the only chance we have to end this slaughter!!

  22. Shidjuu Shafudah says:

    Don’t you folks eat meat eg.bacon,beef.sausage etc ? were does it come from?
    From what are your shoes and belts made from? Hope you are going to holistically and you will see that we do derive our day to day products from animals. Are this animals killing themselves ?

    Crocodiles pelts are being turn into belts, shoes etc. and it is a big flourishing industry in the USA why don’ you boycott it ?

    Why eating eggs (UNBORN CHICS) ? But you don’t stage a demonstration against yourself ?

    Please don’t be hypocrites.

  23. Shidjuu Shafudah says:

    This industry is good for Namibia in terms of providing jobs and food for our nation as outlined in our constitution.

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