Fixed-net cherry-salmon fishing in full swing in Esashi
Fixed-net cherry-salmon fishing is in full swing off the coast of Esashi in the Hiyama region of southern Hokkaido. On April 7, five fishing boats set out early in the morning, returning to land a steady stream of live cherry salmon at Esashi Port.
Some fishermen in the town perform the paralyzing process on the fish aboard the boat, in order to maintain the freshness of the catch. On this day, fisherman Hayashi and his crew hauled in a total of 50 kg of salmon and beat their heads with a baton to stun them before skillfully draining their blood. After carefully washing the fish in seawater, a wire is inserted into their heads to remove the nerves.
The cherry salmon processed in this way are then shipped to markets in Hakodate, restaurants in Hokkaido and beyond, as well as stores in Singapore, under the brand name ‘Senjo Katsujime’ (which means processed live on the boat). While promoting the product, Hayashi says, “Cherry salmon has a more refined taste compared to other salmon, and is delicious whichever way you cook it.”
This year’s fishing season began on March 20 and is scheduled to continue until early June.
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