U.S. TV Commercials to Promote Japan Scallops

Yomiuri Shimbun file photo
Workers process scallops in Aomori Prefecture in September.

NEW YORK (Jiji Press) — Television commercials were set to be aired on U.S. news channel CNN starting Tuesday to promote scallops and other fishery products from Japan, Jiji Press learned Monday.

As China’s blanket import ban remains in place on fishery products from Japan over the releases of tritium-containing treated water into the ocean from Tokyo Electric Power Company Holdings Inc.’s crippled Fukushima No. 1 nuclear power plant, the commercials will be aired in hopes of encouraging consumption in the United States.

The commercials were created by the Japan Food Product Overseas Promotion Center, an affiliate of the Japan External Trade Organization established in 2017 to aid exports of agricultural, forestry and fishery products and other food items from Japan.

The commercials will be aired for a few months, advertising the rich taste of scallops and ways to cook the seafood, as well as showing clips of beautiful fishing villages.

According to the Japanese government, the value of scallop exports from Japan in 2022 totaled ¥91.1 billion, half of which were shipped to China. In many cases, Japanese scallops, produced mainly in the northern prefecture of Hokkaido, were sent to processing facilities in China before shipment to the United States.

Demand from the Chinese market evaporated when China introduced the blanket ban on Japanese fishery products, including scallops, in August this year.

Since then, the Japanese government, JETRO and others have been working to advertise Japanese scallops mainly to consumers in the U.S. market.