Sea Cucumber Fishing Suspended for Now in Aomori Due to China’s Blanket Import Ban on Japanese Seafood

Yomiuri Shimbun file photo
Sea cucumber

AOMORI – A local fishery cooperative association in Yokohama, Aomori Prefecture, has decided to suspend sea cucumber fishing using dredge nets, which was scheduled to start in October, for the time being due to the blanket import ban on Japanese fisheries products by China.

Sea cucumbers had been exported to China where they are regarded as a delicacy. However, China banned seafood imports from Japan after the start of the discharge of treated water from the Tokyo Electric Power Company’s Fukushima No. 1 Nuclear Power Plant into the sea off Fukushima Prefecture in August.

Normally when the fishing season in Aomori Prefecture starts in October, sea cucumbers are sold at high prices, but under the current circumstances, prices are expected to remain low.

According to the fisherman’s cooperative, the prefectural fishermen’s federation informed them that there was no likelihood of vendors purchasing sea cucumbers.

The decision to forgo sea cucumber fishing was made at a board meeting on August 31. The fishermen’s cooperative will consider based on market conditions whether to resume fishing if compensation from Tokyo Electric and buyers are secured.