Chris Loew

Chris Loew

Contributing Editor reporting from Osaka, Japan

Chris Loew reports from Osaka, Japan as a contributing editor for SeafoodSource.com. In addition to writing for SeafoodSource.com, he covers Japan for stock-investing newsletter Global Investing. He co-authored a college language text, “Healthcare English:  Read, Write and Speak It.” When not writing, he proofreads Japanese-to-English translations. Chris is a 1990 graduate of The Evergreen State College in Olympia, Washington. After graduation, he worked for two years in the purchasing department of a Japanese meat importer, and for five years as export director for two Seattle food companies, selling to customers in the Far East, and arranging shipping and export documentation for mixed containers of frozen foods.

Published on
March 29, 2018

Russia’s Federal Service for Veterinary and Phytosanitary Surveillance on 23 March lifted its ban on imports of Japanese seafood imports from the six prefectures of Iwate, Miyagi, Yamagata, Ibaraki, Chiba and Niigata. The restrictions had been imposed in response to the 11 March, 2011, Fukushima nuclear disaster. Russia will also accept products from Fukushima Prefecture that are accompanied by documentation showing they are free of

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Published on
March 20, 2018

A revised version of the Trans-Pacific Partnership trade pact was signed on 8 March in Santiago, Chile, without the membership of its former chief backer, the United States.

After U.S. President Donald Trump withdrew from the original TPP agreement, the remaining members – Australia, Brunei, Canada, Chile, Japan, Malaysia, Mexico, New Zealand, Peru, Singapore and Vietnam – went on to forge a deal called the Comprehensive and

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Published on
March 14, 2018

A World Trade Organization (WTO) panel on 22 February upheld most of Japan’s claims challenging South Korea’s ban on importing seafood from eight Japanese prefectures and on additional radionuclide testing requirements.

Japan initially requested consultations on the matter in 2015. The slowness of the ruling was due to the complexity of the matter—Japan claimed violations of a wide range of trade rules—and due to

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Published on
March 12, 2018

Japanese seafood companies will be out in force at the 2018 Seafood Expo North America/Seafood Processing North America, taking place 11 to 13 March.

Included among the roughly 1,000 exhibitors at the Boston Convention and Exhibition Center will be a score from Japan, one of 50 countries that will have a presence at the event.

Banjo Foods Co., Ltd., based in Mishima City, Shizuoka Prefecture, is a processor of Japanese wasabi. The company

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Published on
March 6, 2018

After a long delay, PT Bali Seafood International (BSI) opened its new fish processing plant in Santong, Sumbawa, Indonesia on 22 February.

BSI is a wholly-owned Indonesian subsidiary of North Atlantic, Inc. (NIA), a Portland, Maine-based supplier focused on sustainably sourced and socially responsible seafood. NAI was started by Jerry Knecht, who also heads the Bali office. The subsidiary was established in 2009 to source Indonesian tuna and

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Published on
February 26, 2018

Improvements in the design of fish-aggregating devices (FADs) could make a major difference in improving the sustainability and efficiency of skipjack tuna fishing in the Pacific Ocean, according to the International Seafood Sustainability Foundation.

The Washington, D.C.-based NGO is pushing for better FAD management and practices, focusing on the skipjack fishery in the Western and Central Pacific Ocean. It asserts that improvements in the

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Published on
February 16, 2018

Instagram has become a popular marketing tool for food and restaurants in Japan, and the Alaska Seafood Marketing Association (ASMI) is now riding this wave. 

A recent survey found that 40 percent of Japanese Instagrammers and social media users went on trips and to restaurants mainly to post photos. "Insta-bae," meaning "to look good on Instagram," was selected as one of Japan's top buzzwords for 2017 by Japan's biggest correspondence

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Published on
February 16, 2018

In its consolidated settlement of accounts for the period from April to December 2017, announced on 2 February, Maruha Nichiro reported net profit down by six percent to JPY 15.7 billion (USD 146 million, EUR  118 million).

The company blamed higher procurement costs for the slip in profits, as importation of fish and shellfish constitutes a large part of the company’s business.

The company reported an increase in net sales of five

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Published on
February 15, 2018

Japan’s catch of Pacific flying squid (Todarodes pacificus) in the 2017 calendar year was 47,000 metric tons (MT), down 20 percent from the previous year and the lowest on record, according to a Nikkei Shimbun report. 

However, buyers did not see a price increase because prices were already high in 2016, according to the report.

The cause for the lower catch most likely lies with colder seawater in squid spawning areas, leading to

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Published on
February 13, 2018

Japan’s Fisheries Agency on 23 January requested all coastal fishermen to voluntarily refrain from catching small Pacific bluefin tuna, defined as under 30 kilograms, the Nikkei Shimbun reported. 

Japan has a high possibility of exceeding its quota on juvenile bluefin of 3,423.5 metric tons (MT), set by the Western and Central Pacific Fisheries Commission (WCPFC). As 19 January, the figure had already reached 3200.7 MT, or 90 percent

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