After lifting the embargo on whale meat exports in January, Norwegian fisheries minister Otto Gregussen this week expressed a willingness to establish a system by which whale meat can be exported to Japan.

Gregussen met with Toshikatsu Matsuoka, the Japanese senior vice minister of agriculture, forestry and fisheries, on Monday to discuss the co-ordination of their inspection systems. The Norwegian minister revealed then that he would be happy for exports to begin; as long as a DNA registration system is established to prevent smuggling, and the safety of the food is confirmed.

Norway is anxious that any food exports from its industries meet the standards of the World Health Organisation. As such, the results of an inspection into dioxin contamination will be revealed at the end of May.

The ban on international trade in whale meat was established by a global moratorium in 1993, and Norway’s defiance of this decision has incurred high-level condemnation.

To read about Norway’s defiance of the international ban on trade in whale meat, click here.