I stumbled across some interesting articles about Japanese food while reading the newspaper today. The first was an article about the reduction of next year’s Atlantic bluefin tuna quota by 40% in an effort to save the species from overfishing. I was surprised to read that Japan has stockpiled 24,600 tons of frozen bluefin tuna, which is nearly double next year’s scheduled catch of Atlantic bluefin. Based on the numbers in the article, it sounds like this means that the country has about a year’s supply of tuna on ice (as Pacific bluefin make up the other half).
I try to avoid eating bluefin most of the time myself, but it’s amazing to me that with the species facing such hard times every sushi shop in town is still able to offer a plate of hon-maguro or otoro for just a few hundred yen. It just doesn’t compute.
Read more at Asahi Shimbun: 2010 Atlantic tuna quota slashed 40%
The other article was about growing imports of that seasonal fall specialty mushroom, the matsutake. According to the article some imported matsutake can rival the quality of domestic mushrooms for a much lower price. Perhaps I should check them out. I’ve heard that you can find these mushrooms growing wild in Colorado too, so maybe I can make a hobby of it after I go home too. 🙂
Writing about Japanese food in the news reminds me that I also have yet to post this article from the Japan Times about Elizabeth Andoh and her upcoming book Kansha: Celebrating Japan’s Vegetarian Traditions.