A new record was set in Japan this week when a giant bluefin tuna was sold for $1.8 million in this year’s first auction
Jan 05, 2013 – A new record was set in Japan this week when a giant bluefin tuna was sold for $1.8 million in this year’s first auction at the Tsukiji fish market in Tokyo. The record was close to three times more than the previous record that was set in 2012.
The fish weighed 488 pounds and was caught off the northern coast near the city of Oma, and received a winning bid of $1.8 million. The new figure dwarfs that of the previous record high of $640,000 that was paid during the inaugural auction of last year at the same market. The market is a huge working market that is included on the itinerary of many tours in Tokyo.
The winning bidder on Saturday was Kiyoshi Kimura, the president of the popular chain of sushi restaurants called Sushi-Zanmai. He was also the winner of last year’s auction that set the previous record for a bluefin.
Kimura said his customers want to enjoy the best tuna in Japan again this year and therefore he had to meet their expectations. He said he hopes the good tuna will help to cheer up his country again.
Based on the price that was paid, about $8,015 per kilogram, just one slice of the sushi from the big bluefin would cost sushi lovers at the restaurant up to $340. However, Kimura plans to sell the sushi at a large loss, for about $4.50 per slice so his customers can enjoy the taste and return time and time again for more.
Due to many decades of overfishing in the area, tuna stock globally has crashed, leading some nations in the West to call for banning the catch of Atlantic bluefin tuna.
Three quarters of all bluefin that is caught annually is consumed in Japan. The highly expensive ingredient for sushi known locally as kuro maguro or black tuna has been dubbed the black diamond due to its scarcity. A piece of the underbelly of the tuna or the otoro can cost as much as $23 in sushi restaurants in Tokyo.