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Tuna Fetches $396K in Tokyo


dcs
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Well, it wouldn't be fresh ...

The reason for the continued price appreciation is simple economics. The tuna fishery everywhere has been so over exploited (due mostly to the popularity of tuna for sushi) that the quantity of good fish left still being brought to market has dropped enormously, so prices rise--the Japanese seem to have a near-religious attitude about sushi, and are willing to pay prices that nearly nobody else is, so good fish is hard to find anywhere else.

BTW, my understanding is that nearly no tuna served in Japan or anywhere else is fresh (never been frozen). Today nearly all of it is caught (and cage fattened) far from Japan and other retail markets, and the logistics of the business, airplanes notwithstanding, are such that it simply can't be landed in a fresh state. Witness those films of the central fish market in Tokyo where the tuna are dropped off of trucks onto the floor, stiff as boards and they bounce. They are frozen solid.

Here is a link to an excellent article on the very sad current situation in the world tuna fishery. Bottom line -- bluefin tuna are highly endangered and will soon be extinct if things don't change.

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BTW, my understanding is that nearly no tuna served in Japan or anywhere else is fresh (never been frozen). Today nearly all of it is caught (and cage fattened) far from Japan and other retail markets, and the logistics of the business, airplanes notwithstanding, are such that it simply can't be landed in a fresh state. Witness those films of the central fish market in Tokyo where the tuna are dropped off of trucks onto the floor, stiff as boards and they bounce. They are frozen solid.

This is not limited to tuna, but pretty much all sushi. And all sushi in restaurants, as this is essential in killing parasites and other nasties. Salmon sushi was pretty much never served in Japan before because they're supposed to be riddled with parasites.

From what I've read fresh/just killed fish has no flavor. The decay of the fish allows for enzymes to go to work to release the molecules that contribute to the flavors of the fish. Allegedly, a big part of sushi making is knowing to what level the fish needs to decay to release the maximum flavor.

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This is not limited to tuna, but pretty much all sushi. And all sushi in restaurants, as this is essential in killing parasites and other nasties. Salmon sushi was pretty much never served in Japan before because they're supposed to be riddled with parasites.

From what I've read fresh/just killed fish has no flavor. The decay of the fish allows for enzymes to go to work to release the molecules that contribute to the flavors of the fish. Allegedly, a big part of sushi making is knowing to what level the fish needs to decay to release the maximum flavor.

AFAIK what you said is correct. I seem to recall a sushi book that came out a few years ago in which the author states that (most forms of) sushi must not be served absolutely fresh for the reasons you stated. I tried to find a reference to it before my post but didn't succeed. If anyone recalls it I'd be grateful. Anyway, it puts the lie to all those uninformed comments you read about the "absolute need" for sushi fish to be "the freshest possible."

FDA requires that fish served raw in the US be frozen prior to being served, due to the parasite problem. The only exceptions, interestingly, are bluefin tuna and other similar tuna species. But as noted above, these are nearly always frozen along the way for logistics reasons. Bottom line -- all sushi/sashimi you ever have or likely ever will eat is made from fish that has been frozen.

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AFAIK what you said is correct. I seem to recall a sushi book that came out a few years ago in which the author states that (most forms of) sushi must not be served absolutely fresh for the reasons you stated. I tried to find a reference to it before my post but didn't succeed. If anyone recalls it I'd be grateful.

Trevor Corson - The Story of Sushi

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supposed to be riddled with parasites.

Q: What's the difference between catching sleeping

sickness and getting a bedbug bite?

A: One's a protozoan organism;

the other, an ectoparasite.

BWAAAAAAA-HAAAAAA-HAA -HAHAHAHA!!!!!!!!!!!!! I CAn't fuckin stop myslef!!!! THat was a 2x in-versed ryeming Cuplet IN A-B A-B FORMat wwith reverse stretto 10.5-9 10.5-9 sylables in EACH (with One's and difference gotten 1.5 cadence's a piece). Yes! Yes!!! Thyme to beet off now and call the po-lice! DAMN!!! ANOTHER ONE!!! And that rymed two!!!

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Q: What's the difference between catching sleeping

sickness and getting a bedbug bite?

A: One's a protozoan organism;

the other, an ectoparasite.

BWAAAAAAA-HAAAAAA-HAA -HAHAHAHA!!!!!!!!!!!!! I CAn't fuckin stop myslef!!!! THat was a 2x in-versed ryeming Cuplet IN A-B A-B FORMat wwith reverse stretto 10.5-9 10.5-9 sylables in EACH (with One's and difference gotten 1.5 cadence's a piece). Yes! Yes!!! Thyme to beet off now and call the po-lice! DAMN!!! ANOTHER ONE!!! And that rymed two!!!

Don, you really do need to be better about taking your medicine.

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