There is a great chain of Japanese restaurants in China called Tairyo, in Chinese, 大鱼, dàyú or “Big Fish”. I love Japanese food and DaYu has a simply insane deal – all you can eat, all you can drink (including beer, wine, sake, fresh fruit juices, etc.) for 150 RMB. Or about US$22.
To put that in perspective for those of you who don’t like sushi and teppanyaki, my last trip to our favorite place here in the States ran over US$100 for a very modest date night meal.
I know I have eaten and drunk over 1000 RMB worth at some of our gorge sessions. As I have written before, I have no idea how they stay in business.
What puts this in mind was this powerful piece by Reason TV, How to save a dying ocean from overfishing…, which primarily discusses the Japanese and USA role in overfishing. Those roles are well documented (for two great books on the subject, read Mark Kurlansky’s Cod and The Big Oyster).
What is not mentioned at all – and I find it quite curious – is Chinese overfishing. This has been reported on for years (see here, here and here for examples going back nearly a decade), so I find it very curious that they were omitted from the article.
In any case, I am sure the next iteration of this study will have to involve the seafood appetites of the growing Chinese middle class. One of the things I love about being in China is the exquisite seafood dishes. While a great deal of the seafood is now farmed, I know I’ve eaten wild fish, usually the daily special.
I like the concept of a market based solution as proposed in the article, and modern China is so thoroughly capitalist that such a plan would work well.