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$736,000 Tuna


DonRocks
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Has a single fish sold for over $1,000,000 yet?

Video and news story are here. Forgive the ads - I combed through about a half-dozen sites, and this was about as good as I could do. It's worth watching to see the size of the fish, to take note of the price, and to see the egomaniacs who bought and carved it up (and if I could have bought that sashimi for $5-6 a slice? Oh yeah...)

Man, as I type this, I'm remember the greatest sashimi I've ever eaten - that Kindai Bluefin I had at Monterey Bay Fish Grotto in the spring of 2009. I'll never forget that plate of food - please do click on that link and read the post if you haven't already ... it would honor me if you read about the single greatest sashimi experience of my life.

Cheers,

Rocks

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The first tuna of the year typically goes for a ridiculous price. Some of the guys I used to work with in New England had great tales of the fights over fish. They'd start talking to buyers while still on their boats bringing the tuna back to port. A lot of them catch one fish a summer and that makes their year.

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Thanks, Dean. There are quite a few talented chefs who continue to feature bluefin tuna on their menus when they ought to know better; they perpetuate bluefish tuna's status as a sign of an ultimate dining experience.

Soon enough they will be forced to move to a different species. They need to start a self imposed ban similar to what was done with swordfish.

On a related note, I heartily recommend the book Four Fish: The Future of the Last Wild Food.

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The mazing thing is ow Sword are back. Rockfish is back. Crabs are back. Sustainable harvest limits after a moratorium can result in a well managed fishery with more of a catch than the depleted stocks can yield today. The rockfish harvest is larger now than it was when the fishery was in collapse and is headed to levels not seen in years.

When I started eating sushi {1970 in LA} it was not unusual to see tuna cut from 1600 lb fish. Andthat was dressed weight. Now commercial fish are usully under 1000 pounds and falling. The current management plan will manage them into extinction. We have maybe a 5 year window to avoid total collapse but we should have acted years ago. THis is a true shame. And the farmed fish are harvesting more juvenile fish than they are raising {according to the few reports you can see, the wild farming is secrret and facts are hard to come by} which probably reduced the stocks even further.

DON"T EAT BLUEFIN AND TELL CHEFS WHO DO TO STOP.

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Didn't mean to be insensitive to the tuna situation. I thought that was an interesting video.

Seems that Japan most likely consumes more tuna than this country. We could make a difference here, but would that make a difference worldwide?

*****

Again, I am ignorant! Looks like you are referring to Atlantic Bluefin.

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You have to do what is right for you. Just because the US isn't doing squat about climate change, doesn't mean that no one should.

And yes the Atlantic population will most likely have a catastrophic collapse in the next 5 years under the current management plan. I am not as familiar with the situation in the Pacific.

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Listening to the discussion on DIane Rhems yesterday, the fisheries council president in New England, where most fish stocks are depleted and over fishing is still occurring on cod {Gulf os Maine stock decleared not overfished but overfishing still occuring largely due to a data revision}, skate, monk despite political intervention and pressure to lower the "suatainable" stock levels on cod,was depressing. It is not clear if the spike in the Georges bank cod population shown on the charts in the link is real, or a figment of new counting proceedures ramrodded thru by the political interests, Democratic and otherwise, of the representatives of the fishing industry in New England, but given that the fishery had overfishing going on at all times, its hard to see how its stock can go from overfished to not overfished {think of you bank account, you are spending more than you are putting in but somehow your balance goes from seriously too little to sufficient but you have not met your savings target.... hmmmmmm}

There is a Democratic representative who is already trying to pass a bill that would gut Magnuss Samuelson {the law mandating the management plans} and the fiscal conservatives who believe not good can ever come from a dollar spent by government, want NOAA funding cut. The state fo the science on fish stock health under the Bush administration was that the science went backwards and the voice of the commercial fishing industry was, in my opinion, over weighted. Jane Lubchenko is a real hero in this area, as she has made this a priority at NOAA and has improved the process and the science in the face of incredible pressure and resistance from the fishing industry in New England and the Southern Atlantic fisheries in the US.

The NE fisheries are in utter collapse with landing a fraction of what they were. Landings are now at 20% of what they were in the 80's and less compared to historic highs. And the fishery managers are complaining that the current limits are too low.

What is so Amazing is that when stringent controls are put in place, with a feed back loop {next years catch is based on the information from what the limit SHOULD have been this year and what the landing actually were}, the fisheries rapidly recover and quickly the sustainable harvests are above what the unregulated harvests were when the fishery was in collapse. Examples of this are Rockfish, Chesapeake Blue Crab, Alaskan Salmon. Other fisheries with weak or no management plans just don't perform this way... California, Oregon and most Washington State Salmon come to mind.

Preserving a fishing industry short term only to destroy its resource is far worse than a short term closure or severe limits leading to a sustainable and thriving industry. I have heard some folks on the science side say that a 5 or 10 year moritorium on bluefin would bring the fishery back. I don't know if this is accurate, but we can have a short term moratorium or we can have no Bluefin in a short number of years.

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And as long as I am on my soapbox... here is a real issue that the fisheries management plans often ignore or sidestep.... Bycatch.

Some of the plans do deal with fishing methods to reduce bycatch, but the bycatch is not counted against the allowable catch limits. A boat with license for one species may catch a sizable amount of a non target but salable species but if it doesn't have license for the bycatch, it must toss it back.

In some fisheries, the target fish can be as low as 30% of the total poundage harvested and the other 70% just gets tossed overboard to rot on the sea floor. This can cause dead zones and destroy habitat.

What is needed is a mandate to base the management plans on best science available and to keep that scinece up to date {with lesser input with folk who profit short term from overstating the health of fish stocks} and to also mandate using best available techniques to minimize bycatch.

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we can have a short term moratorium or we can have no Bluefin in a short number of years.

But, Dean, I'm an American, and this is America, and I want my bluefin tuna now. Why should the stupid government or scientists or environmentalists be the ones who decide what I can eat?

/sarcastic whining

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