Tuna is really nice. I like tuna… but i’ve not been eating it for the last couple of years. It’s a meaningless gesture.

Fish stocks across the world are in retreat because of over-fishing. One study suggests oceans will be stripped clean of all fish by 2048. Bluefin is imminently at risk of commercial extinction. The wildlife charity WWF forecasts that breeding stocks of the fish that migrate from the Atlantic to spawn will be wiped out in the Mediterranean by 2012.

 — Revealed: the bid to corner world’s bluefin tuna market, The Independent.

The demand for bluefin tuna in Japan is huge, and drives this business… it’s obviously very profitable for all the parties involved – from corporations, to restaurants, from middlemen, to organised crime. However, given the world’s experience with whaling, it’s really hard to see how we make any progress on these issues.

And, it’s not a new problem. In Monterey, California, there is a museum in one of the now closed canneries showing the 1000lb tuna they used to catch and can. The catch was so huge that it destroyed the market price, much of it ending up at pet food factories. In the North Sea, and North Atlantic, cod has been fished literally to the point of extinction. The same is probably true for herring. It takes a complete collapse in a fishery, literally getting to the point where no fish can be found, before action is possible.

We are rapacious.

The actions of a few are meaningless against the vested interests of industries and corporations; pointless in the face of advertising preaching the virtues of ever higher levels of consumption. Who dreams of the simple life? Our only hope is a change in fashion!


2 thoughts on “Blue

  1. link to the FT story waqs very interesting, but I don’t see any less Louis Viton bags around here, do you?
    I was forced into Omotesando Hills earlier this week and was shocked at the money obviously being spent there, couldn’t see any signs of a recession or a downturn in spending myself.

    Oh and Tuna, mercury laden sushi anyone???
    As you point out, the few of us that will boycott it because, oh you know, we dont want to make it extinct, will have no effect on the demand, in fact I think as it gets scarcer and therefore more expensive, it will become ‘cooler’ to eat it exactly because it’s almost extinct.Demand will only increase not decrease.

    just my 2Y’s worth.

    • Not really, no… although i have to admit they aren’t exactly something i keep an eye open for…

      To some degree Tokyo seems like it will be the last place to show change. The wealth of a nation is concentrated here, and that goes doubly for places like omotesando.

      The link to the FT article was somewhat cynical <gasp> but the point i was alluding to is that if fashion dictates a cheaper look, the consumers with slavishly follow along… we are at their mercy.

      Completely agree on the tuna front. The scarcity premium will be the nail in coffin.

      Along with the usual cynicism, it’s worth acknowledging that the japanese have developed the means to breed tuna in captivity. Unfortunately the farms are an environment disaster for other reasons, but i’m way past hoping for solutions at this point 😉

Wise words...

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