A campaign calling on internet trading giant Amazon to stop selling whale meat products has scored a resounding victory, showing just what can be achieved by a small organization via strategic partnerships and the engagement of consumers through social media.

On February 21, the Environmental Investigation Agency (EIA) released its report’s Unpalatable Profits and launched a campaign urging Amazon to remove all whale products from its wholly owned subsidiary Amazon Japan.

The response was overwhelming. Tens of thousands of people around the world took action via Twitter, Facebook, an online petition and sending protest emails to Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos.

Pilot whales killed in Taiji

By the end of the day, Amazon had quietly removed all whale products from Amazon Japan.

A key aspect of EIA’s campaign was the attention-grabbing 50-second campaign film we distributed to help raise awareness of the issue and spur action.

The film was viewed thousands of times and shared widely around the internet via Facebook, Twitter, blogs and news sites.

“Minke whales to be eaten raw”, for sale on Amazon Japan

“We can only offer our heartfelt thanks to the organisations and the many thousands of people who took action to let Amazon know that cashing in on the slaughter of whales is totally unacceptable for a global business in the 21st century,” said Newman.

But the campaign isn’t over yet, and won’t be until we have a formal commitment from Amazon that it will enact a company-wide, permanent ban on all whale, dolphin and porpoise products.

Let’s hope that other internet retailers selling products from endangered and threatened species around the world are taking note.”