80-year-old Tsukiji fish market holds final New Year auction

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  • 4

    shonanbb

    It will never be the same without the mom and pop shops.
    So many quaint places in Japan have lost their charm with changes like this.

  • 4

    sensei258

    I'd worry more about toxins in the tuna, not what will be underneath the concrete.

  • 1

    edbardoe

    Sushi Dai with a line outside at 6 am, a favorite memory and the best meal ever

  • 1

    Bartholomew Harte

    I have No faith in the cleanup of this new site,especially if it is to involve food & don't trust the government at all-one only has to think of Fukushima & that mess will never be totally safe.

  • 5

    Danny Bloom

    I will miss that market. After several wild and happy ending nights on the town, often took a cab there to nosh on some sashimi and take in the ambiance with some 6 a.m. beer. Oishii beyond words!

  • 4

    paulinusa

    How about building on the old site cafes and restaurants that sit adjacent to the water instead of twenty stories up? Think of worldwide cities where you can sit beside a marina inside or outdoors and enjoy a drink. Tokyo has none of that. I guess I'm hoping for too much.

  • 3

    ifd66

    Shame about loosing the culture, but no mention of the fact that this market makes much of it's money from the indiscriminate trade of endangered species (ie bluefin tuna).

  • 1

    DaDude

    making way for redevelopment of the prime slice of downtown real estate

    Would love to live in a place haunted by the ghosts of dead fish. Fish Poltergeist movie anyone?

  • 2

    mtuffizi

    why? tourist and local love to visit there, sure one of the main reason is location, is convenient. the old culture replace by new location? sad. hope the mom and pop shops can survive in new location.

  • 1

    sighclops

    The new one will be a nightmare to get to. You can only get there via the Yurikamome line or bus/car. It's basically on an island, detached from the convenience of the mainland. Not to mention being further away from shitagai, which has a unique atmosphere in itself. Real tragedy this.

  • 2

    jerseyboy

    Japanese eat about 80% of all bluefin tuna caught worldwide, and stocks of all three bluefin species - the Pacific, Southern and Atlantic - have fallen over the past 15 years amid overfishing.

    Sushi restaurateur Kiyoshi Kimura has prevailed in most of the recent new year auctions, and he did so again this year in the bidding for a 200-kilogram tuna.

    Absolutely no shame. Japan has led the decimation of bluefin tuna stocks -- worldwide -- but still insists on having this idiotic auction to see who is willing to pay the most for a fish that simply represents that avarice. Why not give the 1.0 million or so yen to a conseravtion group working to save bluefin? Nah, that would actually show some real respect for the species rather than eating it.

  • 1

    Danny Bloom

    News reports note the blue fin tuna auction today fetched allegedly 14 million yen, around $140,000 USD.

  • 1

    It"S ME

    Time for Tsukiji to keep Ishihara's media centre alive.

    The site in Koto is still heavily contaminated plus there won't be tourists allowed on buying floor all banned to the overhead catwalks. New site is not as convenient for access, many of the stores and shops also can't afford to move.

    Will end up as a mess, BTW tsukiji also sells a lot of Veggies, will see how the various fish and veggie markets take over. My guess is the Tuna market split up to be in line others.

  • 5

    Disillusioned

    Japanese eat about 80% of all bluefin tuna caught worldwide, and stocks of all three bluefin species - the Pacific, Southern and Atlantic - have fallen over the past 15 years amid overfishing.

    Here is a mistruth! The populations have not 'fallen'. The have plummeted to a point where many marine biologist believe they cannot recover. Over the last 30-40 years they have focussed on catching as many of the large fish as they can. This has depleted the gene pool and the fish are smaller and weaker than they were before the mass hunting started. There have been many moratoriums over tuna fishing in the pacific over the last decade and all have concluded the tuna fishing must stop. There was a three year ban proposed, which was strongly objected to by Japan, of course. I hope Japan enjoys eating 80% of the world's bluefin tuna because it is a dieing fetish!

  • 0

    Brian Wheway

    Its a sad day is it not? well I think that we will have fond memories of the old market, I have been there several time and i have introduced my son to the market on our last visit to Japan, when we go in to a supermarket here in the UK and there is a display of Sushi in the cool cabinet or the instore fish counter, we often smile and say to each other I bet its not a patch on the fresh stuff in the tskukiji fish market. but i must admit the health and safety was not to good and there was large holes in the concrete floor lots of small carts whizzing every where, so yes you have to have eyes in the back of your head, but it does have a sense of old charm i suppose, it will be sad to see it go, i just hope that the new market will be just as atmospheric and charming.

  • 1

    lostrune2

    Here's from the Association itself:

    http://www.japantoday.com/category/national/view/new-tokyo-fish-market-expected-to-open-in-toyosu-in-november-2016

    Hiroyasu Ito, chairman of the Seafood Wholesalers’ Association, insists the move is crucial for Tsukiji to handle modern-day demands for freshness.

    “Railroad freight cars used to roll into the market and unload fish and goods right here,” he says, pointing to a large picture in his office that gives a birds-eye view of Tsukiji’s layout.

    “We don’t use the rail cars anymore. Now refrigerated trucks drive around instead.”

    Key to ensuring perishable goods stay fresh is a so-called cold chain which maintains produce at a consistent temperature until consumers buy it, something the market is ill-equipped to do, Ito says.

    “Customers want fresher and fresher seafood so that they can eat it raw, which puts pressure on us. Delivery people have had to come up with high-tech cooling methods,” he says.

    “We have managed to keep the fish cold in high-quality foam coolers. But we’re pushing the limit—Tsukiji is totally outdated. In the new facility, we plan to shut out air from the outside and keep the fish section at a steady temperature.”

  • 1

    Kurobune

    And they call it "progress" !

  • 2

    zones2surf

    I am sure there are any number of perfectly valid reasons for the move. And yet, I think we all think this is one change that is bittersweet at best.

    Oh, and I am sure that there are a few bureaucrats who have done quite well or will do quite well from the inevitable brown envelopes from real estate companies looking to redevelop the current site. Well, brown envelopes, wining & dining, jobs for them on retirement, positions for sons & daughters, and the like.

  • -2

    Fadamor

    Why not give the 1.0 million or so yen to a conseravtion group working to save bluefin? Nah, that would actually show some real respect for the species rather than eating it.

    Two questions... 1.) Who's supposed to be giving this one million yen... a restaurateur? 2.) How, exactly, does giving ANY entity a lump sum of money "show respect" for a food source? I'm all for species conservation, but your quick and easy solution isn't going to actually do anything.

    Here is a mistruth! The populations have not 'fallen'.

    Oh really?

    The have plummeted to a point where many marine biologist believe they cannot recover.

    But... you just said that they haven't fallen. "Plummeted" is a synonym for "fallen". And while "many" marine biologists believe they cannot recover, "many" others believe there is still hope for the three Bluefin species. While Southern Bluefin are "Critically Endangered" (CR) and Atlantic Bluefin are "Endangered" (EN), Pacific Bluefin are only listed as "Vulnerable" (VU). With the appropriate conservation efforts, species have made full recoveries from each of those categories. It's too soon to be ringing a death knell for Bluefin Tuna.

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