29 May 2009

Criticsm over eating of seal heart by governor-general

1:15 pm on 29 May 2009

The governor-general of Canada has drawn criticism over a decision to eat the heart of a seal - raw - during a tour of the far north.

During an official Arctic trip, Governor General Michaelle Jean gutted a seal slaughtered for her during an official Arctic trip. She then cut out its heart and ate it to show solidarity with embattled Inuit seal hunters.

The feast was held in Rankin Inlet in Nunavut, the first stop on a trip to nine remote northern communities this week.

According to CTV, she said it was "absolutely delicious" and tasted "like sushi".

Ottawa has authorised the kill of 338,000 seals this year, insisting the hunt does not threaten the species.

However, animal rights groups say the practice is barbaric and have waged an aggressive campaign in recent years to stop the annual hunt.

The Humane Society says it was "deeply disappointed."