Japan Launches Whale Meat Vending Machine

Japan has plenty of quirky vending machines that sell just about anything that fits the space, from toys to snacks and even salads, but one that has opened in a port town near Tokyo, is selling a rare and possibly divisive product, whale meat. 

The “Kujira Store” is an unmanned 24hour operation booth housing triple vending machines, for whale sashimi, whale bacon, whale blubber and whale steak as well as canned whale meat.

The price ranges from 1 thousand yen about USD6 to 3 thousand yen about USD19. It is a new marketplace for a japanese whaling operators who struggle to promote the food, that has long been seen as a controversy rather than a delicacy.

The company behind it, Kyodo Senpaku Co. Plans to open a fourth outlet in Osaka next month and hopes to expand the business to 100 locations across the country over the next five years.

However, conservationists say whale meat is no longer part of the daily diet of younger Japanese generations, who are more used to whale watching than eating them.