A giant Bluefin Tuna was recently bought at Tokyo's new fish market for a record $3.1 million (₹ 21,55,27,500). The 278 kg fish was caught off Japan's northern coast.
Mind you, the Bluefin Tuna is an endangered species. The winning bid for the fish was more than double the 2013 annual New Year auction in Japan.
The massive amount was paid by sushi businessman Kiyoshi Kimura, popularly known all over the world for his Sushi Zanmai chain. Kimura’s Kiyomura Corp has often won the annual auction in the past.
Kimura told Japanese broadcaster NHK that he was genuinely surprised by the high price of the fish this year. But he also added that the quality of tuna he bought was the best.
Japan is one of the biggest consumers of the torpedo-shaped Bluefin Tuna and such consumption rates have led to the overfishing of the species.
According to The Guardian, experts have warned that the fish faces possible extinction with their numbers having been depleted by 96% from the pre-industrial levels.
Speaking to reporters, Jamie Gibbon, associate manager for global tuna conservation at The Pew Charitable Trusts said:
The celebration surrounding the annual Pacific bluefin auction hides how deeply in trouble this species really is.
That being said, there have been signs of progress in saving the Bluefin Tuna with Japan and other governments strongly backing plans to rebuild the Pacific Bluefin stocks by 20% of the historic levels by 2034.