Sunday, 17 July 2011


To finish this little series of posts I would like to recommend one of my favourite books, "Of whales and men" By Dr R B Robertson. 

Whaling gets a very bad press these days and with good reason. There is no product from the whale that can not be obtained from alternative sources, and it is simply unnecessary today.

But this was not always the case. The book is the account of a ship’s doctor on a whaling ship in the early 1950s. The author makes a point that many today will not have considered. In the years after the second world war agriculture in Europe was so ravaged that Europe was incapable of feeding itself. It took years to recover and in the UK rationing only ended in 1954, within my lifetime. At that time the whaling industry contributed significantly, through a wide range of products, to the nutrition and health of the population.

The book was published in 1956, and the author, Dr Robert Blackwood Robertson, has been dead for some years. It is still a good read.

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