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Oxford Companion to Food

Oxford Companion to Food

By Alan Davidson

Published 2014

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whale a term denoting a large category of marine mammals, notably the largest such. Until the 20th century it was generally accepted that whales could be hunted and utilized for various purposes, including the provision of food. In whaling communities it has been and remains a routine matter to eat whale meat when it is available. However, advances in the technology of whale-killing equipment, decreases in the stocks of certain species of whale, and changing perceptions of what is an appropriate relationship between human beings and whales have all contributed to create a new situation, in which eating whale meat has become a matter of controversy.