Sunday, May 01, 2005

Fishy problem

This report warns about over-fishing and Japan's blissful unawareness to the problem despite being a major fishing-eating consumer nation.

"Early that morning in Tsukiji I watched my translator, Chie Kobayashi, sampling a scrap of tuna offered to us by one of the fishmongers carving up a blue-fin carcass. It was a little, ragged piece of bright red, a famous delicacy scraped from the hollows between the great ribs of the fish. Chie ate it slowly, solemnly, her eyelids closed, giving little sighs of pleasure: 'That is …so special!' she said after the last morsel. 'I am so lucky!' I thought, how are you ever going to educate the Japanese to give up that pleasure? It would be cruel.

It may not, in any case, be necessary. A brief look at the latest FAO statistics on fish consumption patterns and projections of future demand - on imports and aquaculture investment, on the number of people employed in fishing - shows one nation plainly standing out. It is quite clear that it is in fact the Chinese who are going to eat all the fish. And China's first fish and chip shop has just opened in Beijing."

About the ominous warning about China's first fish n' chips shop in Beijing - I saw the joint (it's called "Fish Nation" and is located in Beijing's equivalent of Mohamed Sultan Rd) but never tried it yet.

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