Fukuoka City’s solutions to make the fishery more attractive for the next generations:- Streamlined and labor-saving; aquaculture and ICT technology- New value-adding; aquaculture of value-added products and the product promotions abroad
Fukuoka City is a seafront city, a gateway from Asia to Japan for centuries with beautiful coastlines. In Japan, Fukuoka, or Hakata – its ancient name, has also been known for its delicious fresh seafood, and fishery has been an essential and indispensable industry for this city. However, Fukuoka’s fishery is facing similar problems like any other fishery city, labor, and successor shortage unpopular with the young generation due to hard labor and income instability. Now new attempts are taken place to pass this old industry to the next generations.
In order to solve these problems and create sustainable fishery, the projects on resource-controlled fishery have been enhanced with local fishing cooperatives and local universities. They are based on the concept of Satoumi, marine-coastal ecosystems comprising seashore, rocky shore, tidal flats, and seaweed beds. For the projects, fishing grounds are created according to the characteristics of the areas and fishing methods in order to improve the environment, with the support of the national and prefectural governments. Artificial habitats are also to be made for seaweeds, abalone, and sea urchins, and the seedlings of Asari clams, abalones, and prawns are to be released. And aquacultures of oysters and sand-free Asari clams are also in progress. Sand-zero Asari clams can be favorably accepted in Japanese households due to the hassle-free feature – no need to remove sands in cooking preparation.
Resource-controlled fishery such as aquaculture can facilitate controlling the quality of the products, and it enables to enhance the branding of award-winning Karatomari Ebisu oysters and sand-zero Asari clams. And also, the aquaculture of bivalve mollusks is promising in ecological point of view, because they take organic substances and sediments in the sea and clean the water. At the same time, the improvements in operational efficiency in the fishery are activated with the introduction of ICT technology. The fishermen can obtain information on the water temperature, salt level of the water area where they are fishing even before going to the site and all the data accumulated can be utilized for analysis in fishing, and that can be very useful for guiding new workforce entering in the industry as well as for controlling resources.
Now, backed by a favorable tailwind of increasing demand for fresh, high-quality seafood due to the popularity of Japanese cuisine abroad, especially in Asia, Fukuoka City can use its advantages of geographic location and being one of the major logistic hubs in Japan. The seafood can be shipped from its international airport within the city, which is linked with major Asian cities, so the Asian consumers to enjoy fresh Fukuoka’s seafood on their tables promptly. Fukuoka’s seafood has been promoted to establish a brand in major Asian cities, at tasting corners of trade fairs and department stores or technical site visits by the chefs of renowned hotels and restaurants.
Fukuoka City’s fishery has opted for the solutions mentioned above, such as resource-controlled fishery, ICT technology, and branding, to build a sustainable fishery future so that it will be more attractive future workforce. And the reputation of Fukuoka’s seafood will also be kept hereafter.