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Salmon Peptide Lowers Blood Pressure

April 24, 2009

A research paper, titled "Structural Determination of ACE Inhibitory Activity in Salmon Peptide and Its Blood-Pressure-Lowering Effect," was submitted to The Japanese Society of Fisheries Science by the Central Research Institute of Maruha-Nichiro Holdings; it received an award. The paper was collaborative work with Kuniaki Tatsuta, Professor of Faculty of Science and Engineering of Waseda University.

Maruha-Nichiro HD laboriously continues its research on effective utilization of marine resources, towards the commercialization of the research results. In this research, the company succeeded in the development of "salmon peptide" from unused parts of the fish generated during the processing; salmon peptide has the ability to lower blood pressure. Salmon peptide is an enzymatic decomposition product of salmon meat; not only does it display high safety properties, but moreover its effectiveness attracts attention from the field of medical science.

The research paper consists of three sections: 1) the verification outcome of salmon peptide's function to lower blood pressure; 2) search and structural determination of peptide (activated peptide, which exhibits blood-pressure-lowering effect) within salmon peptide; and 3) the verification data of stability and safety of activated peptide against digestive enzyme (establishment of the company's own evaluation system).

The company is awaiting a result of a pending application for a special health food product of "salmon peptide" submitted to the Ministry of Health, Labor and Welfare. If the process goes smoothly, a new product development from Maruha-Nichiro Foods will be expected sometime this year.

The original article was published on April 24, 2009 and was translated by Kiyo Hayasaka.

Farmed Sanriku Coho Salmon: Unit Price Plunges to \400 level

April 23, 2009

According to the Miyazakki Fisheries Cooperative, the harvest amount of cultured Sanriku coho salmon, from April 11 through 20, fell 15.1 percent, to only 205 tons (152 tons at Onagawa and 48 tons at Ishimaki). Its average unit price displayed a sharp decline in comparison to the previous year, registering \494, a 16 percent decrease.

The cumulative catch amount until April 20 recorded a 23.4 percent decline, or 430 tons (291 tons at Onagawa and 134 tons at Ishimaki). The cumulative average unit price dropped 5.9 percent to \547 per kg.

The sales peak of fresh fillet at mass retailers is forthcoming, creating a possibility that the market rate may pick up towards the Golden Week holiday.

The original article was published on April 23, 2009 and was translated by Kiyo Hayasaka.

NSEC Holds Event Celebrating Lift of Shishamo Smelt Fishing Ban

April 17, 2009

The Norwegian Seafood Export Council (NSEC) held an event titled "Norwegian Shishamo Smelt Comes Back!" in Tokyo on April 15, to commemorate the lifting of the shishamo smelt fishing ban for the first time in six years. Vidar Ulriksen, State Secretary of the Norwegian Ministry of Fisheries and Coastal Affairs, and Arne Walther, Norwegian Ambassador to Japan, attended the ceremony and participated in "Kagami Biraki" and "Shishamo Smelt Giveaway."

Hans Petter Nas, NSEC representative in Japan, expressed his satisfaction: "Shishamo smelt has been always a topic of a conversation since I came to Japan. I am very pleased to be able to celebrate resumption of shishamo smelt fishing with the State Secretary."

State Secretary Ulriksen emphasized the importance of thorough management of natural resources by saying, "Norwegian shishamo smelt fishing now reopens this year; however, we regret that we didn't conduct natural resources management in the past. Unless we are certain that the fish spawns and that the next generations come to existence, we won't lift a moratorium. Shishamo smelt plays an important role for resources maintenance of other wild fish species." He additionally mentioned 290,000 tons of projected shishamo smelt production for this year. "It will be great if we can ship more than 20,000 tons to Japan," he continued.

State Secretary Ulriksen, Reprehensive Na, and Ambassador Walther all in Japanese happi coats performed Kagami Biraki to commemorate the event. Enjoying perfectly broiled shishamo smelt, they all promoted the fish by saying "Oishii!" (Delicious!) in Japanese.

Furthermore, State Secretary Ulriksen visited tables at the event, disseminating the fish to general visitors. His "shishamo smelt giveaway" symbolized a comeback of Norwegian shishamo smelt.

The original article was published on April 17, 2009 and was translated by Kiyo Hayasaka.

Maruha Nichiro Holds General Meeting of "Kanto Gyoeikai"

April 17, 2009

Maruha-Nichiro Kanto Gyoeikai (Chairman: Kazuo Iwase, President of Yokohama Gyorui) held a regular meeting in Tokyo on April 16. 70 key people from major wholesalers in the Tokyo district attended the meeting.

Maruha-Nichiro HD President Yuji Igarashi said, "In the midst of the financial slump, a merger between Maruha and Nichiro was done in a timely manner. In addition to the synergic effect seen in terms of costs, business measures and policies, such as reinforcement of procurement strength, are also going very well."

The results of the fiscal year 2008 are currently in the process, "The consolidated results seem to settle around sales of \905 billion, operating profit of \16 billion, and ordinary earnings of \7 billion. The seafood segment, especially the Northern America unit, performed really well in the first half year; however, sales stagnation of high-end commodities caused a slowdown, ending in unusually sagging results in the fourth quarter," he continued.

In terms of the foods segment, he commented, "We suffered tough fights, as a result of increasing costs for raw material in the first part, and unfavorable sales result in the last half. Though operating gain indicates an increase over the previous year, a loss from foreign exchange caused ordinary earnings to be stuck around \7 billion. It is projected that the final result of gain and loss will be net loss of \6 billion."

Next, Maruha-Nichiro Suisan President Shigeru Ito explained business polices: "The Division of Fresh Fish Marketing will be newly added to the Aquaculture Operating Department in order to aggressively market our farmed amberjack."

After the general meeting, a get-together party was held.

The original article was published on April 17, 2009 and was translated by Kiyo Hayasaka.

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