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Historical documents

85 Ball to Department of External Affairs

Cablegram Department 71 TOKYO, 24 August 1946, 11 a.m.


Following is my comment on S.C.A.P. statement reported in my
Department 70. [1] The 25,000 tons whaling meat which the Japanese
estimated they can secure from the Antarctic, would provide only
about 3 1/2 ounces per person per month for the urban population
through the five shortage months May to September. Three and a
half ounces of whale meat are equivalent to about one ounce of
rice in calorific value which is the most important criterion of
food value under present conditions in Japan. This would provide
approximately three calories per person per day which is

2. Considerable body of fishing opinion here believe that fuel and
ship repair facilities required by whaling expedition would
produce much greater food yield if used to increase fishing in
home waters.

3. Have been confidentially but reliably informed by the fishing
expert here that 254,000 barrels of fuel oil have been allocated
by S.C.A.P. for the expedition.

4. Moreover experts expect sufficient vitamin A will be available
from home fishing for all Japanese needs plus surplus for export.

1 S.C.A.P.'s statement issued on 23 August explained that the
whaling expedition had been authorised to use idle equipment and
personnel as an emergency humanitarian measure to relieve Japan's
food needs and a world shortage of whale oil and vitamin A. It was
to be controlled entirely by Allied occupation authorities, would
observe international whaling regulations, and would not affect
commercial interests.

[AA:A1067, P46/10/10/3/1, i]
Last Updated: 11 September 2013
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