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Taiyo A&F's Purse Seiner, Daini Taiyo Maru (425 t), Has Grand Ceremony

July 29, 2009

Taiyo A&F held a ceremony on July 27 at Ishimaki Grand Hotel in Ishimaki, Miyazaki Prefecture, marking the completion of a one-boat purse seiner, Daini Taiyo Maru (415 t), constructed for the Ishimaki Area Project of the Fishing Boats and Fisheries Reconstruction Project. 200 people were invited to the ceremony. Participants included: Jun Azumi, a member of the House of Representatives in the Diet (Democratic Party of Japan) from his home constituency; Itsunori Onodera, a member of the House of Representatives in the Diet (Liberal Democratic Party) from Kisennuma election district; Maruha Nichiro Suisan President Shigeru Ito; Shigeto Nagatani, Fisheries Coordination Division Manager of the Fisheries Agency; Ishimaki Mayor Hiroshi Kameyama; Isao Nakasu, Chairman of the Japanese Fisheries Association; and Toshihiko Misawa, President of Miho Zosen.

President Imamura Says, "We Aim for Reinvigoration Of Japan's Fisheries"

After an observation event at the Ishimaki Port, the ceremony was carried out at the hotel at 4PM.

Taiyo A&F President Hironobu Imamura said, "I have been pointing out that the slow constructions of replacement vessels in Japan is because of the inadequate government policies. Japan's fisheries will deteriorate, unless a \500 billion fisheries recovery fund is set up and ship constructions are systematically implemented. If the government pays attention to the fact that the Japanese can self-sufficiently provide only rice and fish, they cannot let go of fisheries. It is problematic that there is only Miho Zosen where boats can be built. In Europe, \1 trillion is allocated for the soft and hard infrastructure development. I want to see politicians, government officials, and the private sector all together appropriate a fund of \500 billion in Japan. One of the key words of the ship is co-existence and co-prosperity with a local community. We are working towards this goal not only in Ishimaki, but with Shimonoseki Fishery. We want to keep working hard for the recovery of Japan's fisheries."

Figure 1:President Imamura

One of the congratulatory speeches by guests of honor was given by local politician Jun Azumi: "President Imamura tackles his business with a genuine sense of crisis. When we look at overseas round haul net fisheries, the United States spends \10 billion from ODA to extensively secure Southern fishing grounds. Japan is required to follow this dry approach. Additionally, Ishimaki as a port town needs to reconstruct its port accommodating the needs of large vessels. Furthermore, we must thoroughly carry out fisheries structural reform. I would like to work hard with everyone, so that we can rely on fisheries."

The original article was published on July 29, 2009 and was translated by Kiyo Hayasaka.

Views on Saury Fishing Exchanged: Set-up of Monthly Harvest Goal

July 28, 2009

The Fisheries Agency held a meeting on operations and supply systems for the 2009 saury fishing season on July 23. The National Saury Sticknet Fisheries Cooperatives, the National Saury Producers Market Distribution Information Council, and the Japan Fish Meal Association participated in the meeting and discussed this seasons' monthly harvest goal and the construction of the shipping and distribution systems of saury for fishmeal.

As for this year's TAC of 350,000 tons under management of the Minister, a monthly catch goal for the months of August through December at present was set up as follows: 20,000 tons for August, 95,000 tons for September, 110,000 tons for October, 85,000 tons for November, and 40,000 tons for December. Of them, for fishmeal, a goal of 60,000 to 65,000 tons was set, after the end of fishing operations in Russian waters.

With regard to the fishing operation system, as present suggestions, "a rotation system with designated catch landing dates" during fishing in Russian waters and "a system to designate the number of catch landing weekly by vessel type" during operations in Japanese waters were presented. In order to flexibly respond to saury's fishing ground conditions, growth rates, and the economic circumstances, rules were set in the way that they could be altered weekly.

Discussion of the establishment of the shipping and distribution systems of saury for fishmeal was conducted at a review committee organized by four related persons in the Hokkaido and Honshu areas. According to a draft of a plan, for the dates of catch hauling, the second grade saury (non-ice storage) was given different dates than the first grade suary (ice storage); also, if necessary, a delivery platform could be appointed. In principle, sales transactions must be conducted between involved parties.

In terms of the distribution management, differentiating the first grade saury from the second grade by issuing certificates of the second grade saury for sellers at markets was decided. This decision was to make sure that markets as well as business clients pay attention to the management of the second grade fish during the fishing season.

In addition, efforts to expand the domestic consumption and export of saury by the National Saury Sticknet Fisheries Cooperatives were presented. It was also confirmed that a cooperative framework including market and distribution stakeholders would need to be built.

The original article was published on July 28, 2009 and was translated by Kiyo Hayasaka.

Nippon Suisan Promotes Hoki as Foodstuff

July 28, 2009

At the Japan International Seafood Show, Nippon Suisan promoted its access power to white fish resources in various different areas of the world made possible by the Nippon Suisan Group's global links. Out of many products, the company featured hoki, placing it as an "Attention Worthy White Fish," and sharing the usefulness of the fish as a cooking material with visitors. The company also presented the TACC of white fish resources in the world by area. Based on this information, hoki has high shares in the different parts of the world; 25 percent in Chilean waters; 15 percent in Argentina waters; 56 percent in Australian waters; and 30 percent in New Zealand waters.

Additionally, a difference in meat quality between Alaskan pollack and hoki as a raw material for fried white fish was compared. As a result, hoki marked a higher fat content than pollack and also indicated numeric data surpassing pollack in terms of tenderness and juiciness after cooking. The K value, which indicates the degree of freshness, also showed that hoki tended not to rise easily, compared to Alaskan pollack, evidencing that hoki was suitable for processing after defrosting.

Featuring Convenience Foods Using Hoki

Figure 1: Sakana de One Dish

Nippon Suisan showcased convenience foods product made from hoki, "Sakana de One Dish" (Fish de One Dish). With hoki and seasonings included in a package, all you have to do is to stir-fry the package content with your favorite vegetables and you can easily enjoy authentic cuisine. There are three different flavors: basil, garlic, and butter soy sauce.

In addition, a wide array of recipes, "Hoki Curry Soup," "Stir Fried Hoki with Bitter Gourd," "Hoki and Clam Acqua Pazza" and "Hoki with yuzu pepper flavor," were introduced for deli and food services, promoting the fish's usefulness as professional foodstuff.

The company commented, "Previously, people had a strong image of hoki as a raw material only for fried white fish; however, from now on, we want to present the fish as foodstuff in the form of fillet."

The original article was published on July 28, 2009 and was translated by Kiyo Hayasaka.

Canadian Fresh Cultured Sablefish Arrives in Japan

July 27, 2009

Blue Link Co., a seafood trading company managed by President Mitsunobu Kamiya, promoted Canadian farmed sablefish in the forms of sushi and sashimi at the Japan International Seafood Show.

The sablefish was cultured off of Vancouver Island in Southwestern Canada, where untamed nature still remains, by Sable Fish Canada Ltd, located in Canada. The company unprecedentedly succeeded in farm raising the fish.

Sablefish, which is raised to weigh 2 to 3kg in two to three years, is semi-dressed at the production site and next the fresh fish is air-freighted to Japan; one to two tons of sablefish is exported to Japan every week. Depending on the recipients' needs, there are cases where the fish is processed to fillet. The import price of this type of sablefish tends to be slightly higher than wild, frozen, dressed sablefish, because the fish is designed for raw consumption.

Fresh Sablefish Sushi

Blue Link, which also deals with Australian Tasmanian salmon, markets this fresh sablefish under the name of "Kirari." Seared sablefish, named "Aburi Gindara Sushi," is offered at sushi restaurants in the Tohoku and Chubu regions.

"Eating sablefish raw comes as a surprise to Japanese customers. The fish can be deliciously consumed not only in sushi, but in sashimi and shabu-shabu due to its high fat content. Since we import the fish fresh, its taste is retained, differing from the frozen kind. We hope that people will enjoy its texture and taste, which can only be attained by keeping the fish fresh," said Yoshiro Sato, Sales Department Director of Blue Link.

Half of sablefish juveniles cultured in Canada are hatched eggs collected from farm raised parent fish. The rest are gathered from wild sablefish. The fish is a result of the cross breeding of superior lineage. Sable Fish Canada Ltd began its aquaculture research nice years ago and now produces an annual yield of 250 tons of sablefish. The company mainly sells the fish in North America; prior to business deals with Japan, the fish was marketed in Southeast Asia.

Paul Simpson from Sable Fish Canada Ltd. said, "Vancouver Island is an island with virgin forest, away from the mainland Canada. We raise our fish in the beautiful ocean where no other fish tanks are existent. With carefully selected raw materials for feed, we rigorously manage our operation from juvenile to adult fish." He promoted the fish's safety and high quality.

The original article was published on July 27, 2009 and was translated by Kiyo Hayasaka.

Taiyo A & F Completes New Purse Seiner on July 27

July 24, 2009

Taiyo A & F's new purse seiner "Daini Taiyo Maru" (The Second Taiyo Maru), 415 tons, was completed. There will be an observation event at the Port of Ishimaki and a ceremony at Ishimaki Grand Hotel on July 27. The purse seiner was constructed at Miho Zosen in collaboration with Tsuda Fishery, as part of the Ishimaki Area Project of the Fishing Boats and Fisheries Reconstruction Project.

Daini Taiyo Maru will mainly operate out of Sanriku Coast as a one-boat purse seiner in an attempt to coexist with the local economy through cooperation with the fisheries, processing, distribution, and marketing sectors at the Ishimaki Port. By consolidating the existing four-boat operation system to a one-boat system, reductions in construction, maintenance, fuel, and labor costs will be achieved.

Aiming For Energy Efficiency And Harvest's Higher Added Value

There was a one-boat operation of Northern purse seiner, Hokusho Maru (300 tons) by the Development Center and Souhou Maru (329 tons) for the Hachinohe Project of the Fishing Boats and Fisheries Reconstruction Project prior to Daini Taiyo Maru. In addition to the one-boat operation, the improvement of harvest's added value, safety, and living space to the boat was realized.

The boat's characteristics are: 1) a type of the vessel is a two deck vessel with the forecastle engine, a bulb bow, and a flapped rudder; 2) for mackerel, horse mackerel, and sardine catch, a large fish pump was installed; 3) quickly brine frozen mackerel is brine cut by a machine and then is landed as high quality boat frozen cured mackerel after being kept at the ultralow temperature; and 4) the capacities of a refrigeration unit is 130 tons, 20 hours, for brine B1 and 40 tons, eight hours for PS.

Rapidly on-boat frozen, high quality catch is landed at the Ishimaki Port and provides high value added products to local seafood traders and processors, contributing to the invigoration of the local economy as a whole.

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

Seafood Show Report:
Many Booths Showcase Freshness Enhancing Technology

July 23, 2009

It is a tough thing to preserve the freshness of marine foods; however, overcoming this issue leads to the creation of higher value added products. Many stalls at the Seafood Show presented freshness enhancing techniques to improve freshness, which could prepare the way for higher fish prices.

Technican Offers Experience of Liquid Freezing System

Technican Co. showcased a liquid freezing system that holds freezing speed 20 times faster than an air freezing system. The main character of the system is to prevent drips (blood); moisture inside a cell remains the same and a cell will never be destroyed. Such sashimi products as amberjack and tuna can be frozen, retaining their freshness. The company said, "We would like you to experience the power of our liquid freezer, which cannot be conveyed with a booklet." The company encouraged people to bring in sample fish for experience.

Nichimo: Upgrading Fish Prices with Sherbet Ice

Nichimo presented sherbet ice that possesses a high cooling capacity with an example where fish used as feed, such as small horse mackerel and mackerel, could be sold for human consumption, leading to higher fish prices.

Ice grains of sherbet ice are so minute that the rising sea temperatures upon fish hauling can be promptly prevented. The cooling velocity of sherbet ice up to 5 °C is three to five times faster than a conventional ice water method and more than ten times quicker at 0 °C, promising its high freshness and quality perseveration capacity.

In addition, there are no scrapes on or pressure against fish caused by ice. Osmotically induced changes in meat quality can be averted, because fish is chilled at a salt level closer to the body of fish.

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

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