Edible Canada, Animal Rights Activists, Seal, Meat
MAGDALEN ISLANDS, QUEBEC - A heard of seals in the Gulf of St. Lawrence at the beginning of the annual seal hunting season. Seal meat is a popular item on the island and a source of fresh local meat every March. March 19, 2013. RANDY RISLING/TORONTO STAR

Seal meat sales surge after animal rights activists launch failed cyber attack

SEAL meat sales have increased dramatically after animal rights activists launched a failed cyber attack on the Vancouver restaurant “Edible Canada at the Market”.

Activists carried out a cyber attack and demonstration on the restaurant after its decision to include seal meat on its menu.

The restaurant was bombarded with low rank online reviews, which resulted in its ranking plummeting from a 4.5 star average to 2.1 in just 30 minutes.

Edible Canada at the Market, Seal Meat, Animal Rights Activists
Seal Meat in Preparation
Eric Pateman, the CEO of Edible Canada said that despite the overwhelming feeling in the first 48hrs that his business could be greatly impacted he is not going to back down. He is settled on seal meat and wants to offer something special in honour of Canada’s 150th birthday.

He said: “It’s one of the most sustainable seafoods in the country. It’s unique. It’s different.

With more than 350 seal loin dishes sold last week, animal rights activists not only failed to destroy the seal trade, but caused the dish to be the most popular item on the menu.

Eric Pateman, the CEO of Edible Canada also said that he couldn’t be happier with how popular the dish has become.

In the first weekend, it was so popular we actually ran out of seal loin in 3 days!  Don’t worry – more is arriving tomorrow morning and we still have lots of the pasta left!

“We served more than 350 dishes which made it the most popular dish on our menu by far, raised more than $700 for ocean conservation and the best part was that 95% of our guests loved it and wanted more!

He is now settled on seal meat and wants to offer something special in honour of Canada’s 150th birthday.

It’s one of the most sustainable seafood in the country. It’s unique. It’s different.

Edible Canada was always known as a company that uses unique Canadian ingredients. It tells the story of Canadian food history from the historical context as well through the ingredients, helping to support farmers and food producers.

“Overall, the general perception of seal has been very positive. We spent six months researching where the product was coming from, obviously looking at all of the fisheries, functioning of the hunt and understanding a little bit more about the sustainability issues and I think we were pretty comfortable with the position that we have got on this.

“I also intend to participate in the seal hunt myself, so I can get first hand experience on this.

“At the end of the day people will protest what they want to protest about. Seal is a very controversial ingredient.

“I think there will always be people of different opinions and I am totally comfortable with that.

“We are a restaurant that chooses to serve meat. We choose meat that is ethical, humanely sourced that we are very comfortable about. We need to know exactly where all of our products are coming from.

“We have great steaks and seal meat is no different.

“When we had cyber attacks based on this controversy, I find it a little bit disappointing especially in the warning and tone from the messages that we are getting.

“There are better ways of spreading a message and personal attacks or mass cyber attacks are not the best way of going about this.

“Historically seals were predominantly hunted for their pelts and fat. Typically, the meat has been going to waste so there is a primary sustainability issue. The seal population has risen from two million to eight million in four decades.

Pateman said putting seal on the menu in part stems from the restaurant’s desire to participate in the Dine Out Vancouver street food festival.

It’s a true Canadian delicacy.

“We always want a story around for Dine Out, something historic and cultural, something uniquely Canadian, but it’s also something that’s very important in today’s world such as sustainability.

Peter Fricker, a spokesman for the Vancouver Humane Society rushed to condemn the good cause.

He said: “We think the (seal) industry is on the verge of dying. We would hate to see it revived and start supplying meat as a delicacy for foodies.

Dion Dakins, CEO of the Canadian seal processing company Carino thinks that despite the attack from animal rights activists, it’s important for the trade to support its customers and their consumers. And to encourage people to make informed choices in a world where truth and reality are often clouded by propaganda.

He said: “We will never satisfy or meet the eye and the mind-set of animal rights activists. We stand in opposition simply by existing and continuing the business. We work cooperatively with veterinarians and the government to improve the activity and the animal welfare outcomes.

“It’s a very sad reality that we live in the electronic day and age where people can be voicing their opinion, and can be voicing public opinion by simply sitting at the keyboard, without ever understanding the material that they are discussing.

“It’s common for people in our society to get carried away and can very quickly become unacceptably aggressive and threatening in social media forums. Animal rights activists either don’t realise, or simply don’t care that the attacks they levy are actually hurting people, cultures and traditions.

“Overly aggressive behaviour by activists are illegal. While it is very difficult for law enforcement agencies to control it when it’s cyber bullying. It’s completely unacceptable, and very hard to regulate but we must find a way to protect individual choice and the rights of consumers.

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