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Far more bluefin sold than reported caught, with Japan consuming 80%: report

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Why can't the Europeans who manages all the fishing control their fishermen!??????

The illegal fishing is done by greedy fishermen....

-10 ( +1 / -11 )

It's funny how Australia etc. really have a hissy fit when Japan and whaling are mentioned together in the same sentence, but the world should be much more worried about this.

4 ( +7 / -3 )

T_rexmaxytime.

Tough to control, even tougher as many vessels are often not registered to a country(read recent news reports). Said that Tuna like Shark-fin(mods bear with me here) are caught worldwide regardless of local countries rules.

Now worldwide there 2 major markets (Japan = Tuna) & (Shark-fin = Hong Kong) the majority of those catches go through those 2 markets.

So, yes, worldwide Japan has the biggest tuna market and hong-kong has the Shark-fin market, but the catches are globally and sold via those markets as they get the highest prices.

So most likely any tuna that people overseas consume got traded in japan, etc.

So are the consumption figures correct? Not according to many reports that have shown a major increase in tuna consumption worldwide.

On the same token how much of the tuna/shark-fin consumed overseas was caught illegally and sold in Japan/Hong-Kong and thus washed/cleansed.

In short we don't know if the sushi, etc we eat was caught legally or not, nor its origin.

-2 ( +2 / -3 )

If there's demand (Japan), there'll always be supply(iilegal fishing).

0 ( +5 / -3 )

Gready people.

1 ( +4 / -3 )

What an astounding surprise. Can't ask Japanese to sacrifice something, can we? Hope you enjoy it, folks - in five years' time you'll have to do without.

Bunch of selfish, greedy, corrupt babies.

-4 ( +9 / -13 )

Howz about breeding more tuna to satisfy the demand?

People should be able to eat as much maguro as they want, no?

-4 ( +4 / -8 )

Ivan -- spot on. Everybody knew that Japan's money would trump any actual attempts at enforcing meaningful quotas. Just a shame that these "bunch of selfish, greedy, corrupt babies" is going to manage to wipe out whole species of fish thousands of miles away because it is their "cutural right".

-2 ( +6 / -8 )

Don't people realize that soon they won't be able to fish them destroying their own livelihood in the process? Is greed that blinding? The majority of the blame lies on the evil fishermen but surely the Japanese can do something, limit consumption for example.

5 ( +8 / -3 )

limit consumption for example

What?!!

-4 ( +1 / -5 )

I always wondered how the Y100 kaiten sushi shops managed to put 2 tuna sushi on a plate for Y100.

Loopholes are everywhere: Since ivory was banned there has been a huge surge in "russian mammoth tusk" as an alternative. As russian mammoth tusk is not covered by the ban it is imported freely. DO YOU REALLY THINK that the tundra is sprouting mammoth tusks like asparagus in spring? Or could it be poached tusks from modern day elephants treated in a chemical bath to age the appearance??

-2 ( +2 / -4 )

Cheating is something the human race hasnt been able to overcome.

3 ( +6 / -3 )

Limit what consumption?

Blue fin-tuna is a luxury food vs other more commonly consumed types of (Yellow-fin), etc tuna. Few can afford it now.

Ask any japanese how often they can afford to put Tuna(any type) on for supper, etc per week/month. Answer might shock you and yet 130mil consume 80% of the worlds consumption.

Now that is 130mil vs x Billion and japan consumes 80% of the worldwide consumption. The math don't add up, considering the tuna casseroles, sushi, etc consumed overseas.

Like I said most of what is traded in Japan is for the overseas market.

-7 ( +1 / -8 )

japan will just eat it all till there is nothing left. that is the truth. and when there a little somewhere it will be really expensive.

2 ( +7 / -4 )

Clear example of the tragedy of the commons.

-3 ( +1 / -4 )

I read somewhere that the Japanese are quite happy for the media circus to focus on the whaling issue...they know the whales are a lost cause but are keeping it on the front page to keep the focus off the tuna issue... I have seen a couple of TV programs in japan proclaiming that the tuna issue goes to the very core of being japanese and that they must do all they can to prevent reductions in catch numbers.... its only a matter of tiem time the tuna issue hits the fan in a big way...

3 ( +5 / -2 )

It was only a year or two ago that the Japanese Fishing Industry admitted it had been catching double it's quota of Tuna in Australian waters for over 10 years..." That was regrettable" The Med boarders on so many countries all with different agenda, mostly money making and ensuring that their heavily susibised fishermen produce something, there is little hope of anyone's Grandkids eating this fish. Closer to home last year the average weight of the Tuna catch was not released...seems the declining stock and weight of local catches are in trouble too. If as was alluded to above 80% of fish imported into Japan an unknown % are on sold to other countries then surly that's where any system of management should focus. But that might be "regrettable"

0 ( +3 / -3 )

Cricky

It was only a year or two ago that the Japanese Fishing Industry admitted it had been catching double it's quota of Tuna in Australian waters for over 10 years..." That was regrettable"

I recall reading about this, what l find amusing is that the Japanese while admitting this want to reintroduce whaling and say they can be trusted to abide by quotas set. Yet here is a clear demonstration that Japanese fishing industry cant abide by quotas. Afterall double the quota is not a oops we went over its a there's the quota oh screw it lets keep going.

Sadly though the Japanese arnt alone in this practise but most of the fish caught go to feed a hungry Japanese population. What are they going to do when they cant get their tuna? What fish is next.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

Every time I read articles like this I get a craving for Otoro. Now, since I can afford it, I am going to get some for this evenings meal. Also some high end Uni, and King Crab.

I still do not believe the 80% and think its a lie. Now the Chinese might actually be eating a lot more of it, because it is trendy for them and they really want to become Japanese.

-12 ( +4 / -16 )

Why was I down voted? What it out of line or controversial about stating that the fishermen fishing the bluefin tuna are destroying their own livelihood? or stating that the Japanese should limit their consumption. JapanToday suffers from groupthink.

4 ( +7 / -3 )

@Spidapig24

Sadly though the Japanese arnt alone in this practise but most of the fish caught go to feed a hungry Japanese population. What are they going to do when they cant get their tuna? What fish is next

The question is not what fish but what is next? Off of my head I would say Soylent Green. We are driving Bluefin tuna and other creatures to extinction, destroying forests and farmlands at a rate so fast that very soon our source of food will be Soylent Green.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

How about everyone here refusing to buy tuna?

0 ( +4 / -4 )

Think like a fisherman. You are most likely retiring in 10 to 20 years....so you would probably catch all the tuna you could so that you could rest easy and enjoy your golden years.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

A way will be found to grow nice fresh tasty tuna, just like others do with cows and pigs. It's just more difficult, i.e. more expensive. And trivially, it should be done before the nice fresh tasty tuna disappears, nobody wants that. Rest assured everyone, Japan will not be the first country to grow the nice fresh tasty tuna, it will be other countries that will then sell to japan at hyper-greedy prices.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

How about everyone here refusing to buy tuna?

What?!

2 ( +2 / -0 )

sorry badfingers, but all this discussion just has me craving for otoro and uni (wink to japangal) and hotate

-4 ( +1 / -5 )

So... say a 15 pound baby blue fin is caught and raised in a farm. It grows to 100 pounds in the farm. So the report is stating that this is where the gap comes from?

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Japan will not be the first country to grow the nice fresh tasty tuna

Actually they were; four years ago Kinki University reported that they had succeeded in producing its first shipment of 1,500 fry, the third generation of the artificially hatched (completely cultured) bluefin tuna Thunnus orientalis, which had been artificially incubated and raised at the Lab's Ohshima Experiment Station (Kushimoto-cho, Wakayama Prefecture). The fry have been delivered to a domestic fish culture company as seedling for the culture of bluefin tuna.

http://www.21coe-kinkiuniv.jp/pdf/3rd_PBT_English.pdf

Personally I see this as on a par with factory farming, ie yet another ethical reason not to eat flesh. Hundreds of thousands of baby fish were allowed to die in the process of perfecting the cultivation techniques, and farmed tuna means fish that normally migrate are forced to spend their whole lives in a limited, enclosed space. It's animal abuse and an abomination.

But don't imagine that Japan is ever going to let anyone else have control of their sushi.

2 ( +6 / -3 )

why are the EU so bad at controlling their bad fisherman?

-4 ( +1 / -4 )

Japangirl, enjoy it while you can, its selfish ignorant people like you that are killing the oceans.

2 ( +7 / -4 )

How about everyone here refusing to buy tuna?

That's the best idea I've heard all day! Please, everyone, don't buy any more tuna!

Yum yum, more for me!

-3 ( +1 / -5 )

no more Tuna problem solved, on to the next fish

0 ( +1 / -1 )

@manta60

I just gave you a thumbs up because I am eating it right now while watching this site and smiling.

And a thumbs up for j4p4

and for Takahiro.

It is not the evil Japanese doing this, it is the people from all the other countries trying to take Yen out of the wallets of innocent Japanese.

-2 ( +4 / -6 )

@JapanGal

It is not the evil Japanese doing this, it is the people from all the other countries trying to take Yen out of the wallets of innocent Japanese.

Wait! What? I'm confused. Which people and where? Instead of pointing fingers at foreigners why don't you instead go after the government and corporations who are robbing the Japanese people day in and day out?

2 ( +2 / -0 )

JapanGal

It is not the evil Japanese doing this, it is the people from all the other countries trying to take Yen out of the wallets of innocent Japanese

HUH How exactly do you work that out! Japan consumes 80% of the tuna caught, so if Japan cut its consumption there would be no need to catch as much. Not to mention the Japanese a couple of years ago admitting illegally catching double their allowed quota in Australian waters (oh but they said many sollies for that so we must forget it right).

At the end of the day demand drives supplies so the Japanese demand it and people catch it simple. Innocent Japanese my ***

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

I ask again, how many kilo's are consumed every month by the average Japanese to account for that 80% consumption(sure they mean traded in japan).

And let me know how many japanese you know that eat that level of blue-fin or even any Tuna and how much would their monthly expenditure be.

Or as said the 20% could refuse to eat any bluefin tuna(not sure how they could tell a bluefin from a yellowfin or standard tuna once on their plates.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Interesting stat:

**with American appetites accounting for another 9

%.**

So all need to cut down.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

The stats are floored. Why would you believe that the Japanese eat 80%. You cannot believe these stats. Figure out the weight and divide it by the populous. It would be like every Japanese individual is eating Tuna every day. Sort of like Americans and BonBons

-3 ( +3 / -6 )

Flawed

-3 ( +2 / -5 )

Don't people realize that soon they won't be able to fish them destroying their own livelihood in the process? Is greed that blinding? The majority of the blame lies on the evil fishermen but surely the Japanese can do something, limit consumption for example.

These people don't care. They aren't destroying "their" livelihood, they are destroying the next generation's chance at it. Is greed that blinding? Yes, indeed it is. A look at the history of Canadian fish stocks of the coast of the Atlantic is a tragedy. This will be even more so as we know that the price of overfishing is way worse than thought back then.

Indeed, blame the fishermen. I wouldn't blame the Japanese for this. Supply and demand. If stupid fishermen are willing to go out and catch it and sell it, there will be consumers. Just outright ban it for a few years, let the stocks recover and then set rules - and FOLLOW through on them.

Why whaling gets more news than this is beyond me.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

JapanGal,

Why is the data flawed, is it because you dont believe it? If its flawed show data to support your position else its just a case of you not liking what is presented.

1 ( +4 / -3 )

Not so much that.

Do the math yourself, and lets not forget those numbers are only for Blue-fin tuna and not yellow-fin and other tuna that is way more heavily caught.

The japanese eat way more yellow-fin, standad tuna than blue-fin as it is too expensive.

Do the math yourself and add in all other types of tuna consumed too.

-4 ( +0 / -4 )

Show me data that it is not.

If you do the math, you will find that according to these numbers, Akachan consume a real lot of Blue Fin.

And by the way, it is real easy to tell the difference between Blue Fin Otoro and Yellow. If you cannot, then stick to cans of StarKist

-3 ( +2 / -5 )

I am sure some posters here think that the Tuna served at the 100Yen Kaiten sushi, etc is also Blue-fin. All I am saying is use your noggin and do some thinking and simple math.

Waiting for more thumbs-down.

-6 ( +0 / -6 )

Thumbs up ItsMe. You are civilized and that is good.

-4 ( +0 / -4 )

Ok the figures, based on the article the blue finned tuna capture for 2009 and 2010 was 70500 tonnes (remember this is whole fish). If Japan consumes 80% of that then that is around 56400 tonnes or over the two years 28200 tonnes. According to Japan's tuna imports (from Japan customs) in 2008 (latest figures available) Japan imported 35000 tonnes of fresh tuna and about 150,000 tonnes of frozen tuna (blue fin falls in here). So in one year they imported 185,000 tonnes of tuna and if we look at this as an average (it has actually been trending slightly down) then 15% of the tuna imported is blue finned tuna. This roughly lines up with other data available.

1 ( +3 / -2 )

And divide that into the population and how much would each individual be consuming?

-1 ( +3 / -4 )

JapanGal,

Sorry but it doesnt work like that. First you need to ask how much of that 185,000 tonnes is actually usable as l said the weights are whole fish weights not what ends up being eaten. So if you can work out what % of the fish is used for consumption go ahead. And by the way the figures you question, they come from the Japanese customs agency so if you want to doubt them feel free.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

JapanGal,

Just to humor you here are your figures, if every bit if the 185,000 tonnes of imported tuna was eaten then it would equate to 1.4 kg of tuna per Japanese person if eaten as a one off. As for the blue finned tuna figures quoted in the article, if every part of the tuna was eaten that would equate to 220gms for every person in Japan eating it once. As already pointed out though those weights include organs, bones, skull, fins the whole lot which arnt eaten. So the amounts will be significantly less.

Do you still doubt the figures?

3 ( +4 / -1 )

gave you thumbs up Spida. I have been watching a stat show on 日本テレビ。面白い。今!

Besides the bones, I am glad everything else is eaten from those beautiful tasty fish.

I want kamashioyaki this weekend.

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

Disgusting, despicable, and destructive. What a shame.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

Japan consumes 80% of the tuna REPORTED caught. America consumes 9% of what's REPORTED caught. Now it seems that what's REPORTED caught is less than half of what's ACTUALLY caught. Of course that's only for the most recent year. When averaged over the span reported in the article (1998 - 2010), the difference is less: Of all tuna sold, about 80% were properly reported under quota and 20% were unreported (presumably black-market sales).

Compounding the confusion in these stats is the facts that some of the stats quoted apply only to Atlantic Bluefin Tuna while some of the other stats apply to ALL (Atlantic and Pacific) Bluefin Tuna. Just another case of making stats imply what you want them to imply without actually stating a bald-faced lie.

2 ( +1 / -0 )

Tsukiji is the world tuna market. It provides the index price for the global tuna market like NY and/or London provides the index for global oil which means that although most tuna may be traded here doesn't necessarily mean it is all consumed here. Some are just paper trading where only bills are just swapped and the fish caught off the coast of Spain is shipped directly to Hong Kong or San Fransisco. Without going through Tsukiji selling directly there is a large possibility that the fisherman would be scammed since price varies day to day.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Japanese fishermen and fish eaters are stupid and greedy, keep on eating TOO MUCH FISH, too many tunas etc..UNTIL THEY ARE ALL EXTINCT?? Who will the Japanese blame?? China?? India?? Korea?? No one to blame but their greedy selves here in Japan! This is not good, for any kind of fish etc..once they are GONE, well, they will only be a memory, simple BIOLOGY 101.

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

With all the tuna catch and consumption statistics you should keep in mind that tasty tuna becomes tasty sashimi and is thrown away once it is not fresh enough for sashimi. Thus, it is hard to guess the numbers. Japanese tuna consumption will reduce in the next decade. They will not be capable of building up tuna farming fast enough.

Not to speak of what happens once China or India start to like bluefin...

Actually, the European problem is that the southern countries do not have sufficient industry in many areas. They rely on agriculture and fishery and they fight amongst each other for agriculture or fishery subsidies from the union. This is something which might come to a change during the current financial crisis in Europe, if the economic and political aspects of the union are deepened.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

JapanGal Every time I read articles like this I get a craving for Otoro. Now, since I can afford it, I am going to get some for this evenings meal. Also some high end Uni, and King Crab.

I still do not believe the 80% and think its a lie. Now the Chinese might actually be eating a lot more of it, because it is trendy for them and they really want to become Japanese.

Right now Japan is directly responsible for poisoning the worlds oceans ie Fukushima, and killing what's left of the poor unfortunate creatures still left swimming around ie tuna, whales, dolphins, basically anything moving. Your response really manages to expose the rotten underbelly of Japans society; deny, consume, and blame someone else. Yuck.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Johannes brings up a good point. Not ALL the tuna sold gets eaten. Some of it is dumped in the trash after sitting out for the day. Sashimi would be an extreme example of this.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

@TakahiroDomingo.... dude, if you say..... "nice fresh tasty tuna" .. one more time, i think i am going to stab myself with a fork..

0 ( +1 / -1 )

I guess the truth hurts? Greed, anger and stupidity will be the downfall of not only this blue fin tuna, but of all other animals, fish etc..that we greedy humans over catch and over eat, just simple biology and as for me, I do not need any tuna, uni etc..I like it but my life does not revolve around fish, I would rather have nice, SPICY Peruvian ceviche with a nice old cerveza any day.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Looks like the entire human race is one giant Ponzi scheme waiting to collapse. Too many of us for the planet. Yikes.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Not to speak of what happens once China or India start to like bluefin...

Sushi has been gaining a popularity in all over the world.

I was amazed to discover how much Chinese love Sushi and Sashimi. The belt conveyor Sushi restaurant (kaiten Sushi) in Shanghai we went to was a one hr wait before they gave us seats to sit down. Many young Chinese are a big eater compared to Japanese.

Here is a data from world population;

China 1,339,724,852 and India 1,210,193,422

It is a matter of time, tuna will be all fished out like a Chilian Bass.

Sashimi grade tuna here is sold at $39.99/lbs in US. FYI

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Every time I read articles like this I get a craving for Otoro. Now, since I can afford it, I am going to get some for this evenings meal. Also some high end Uni, and King Crab.

JapanGal, Americans cannot afford tuna for dinner. You have convinced me Japan is a very rich country. You guys better start defending yourself. US cannot afford to defend you guys. Enjoy tuna!!

2 ( +2 / -0 )

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