Press Release

June 6,2011

Incorporated Administrative Agency, Fisheries Research Agency

Prominence of Pacific sardine group born in 2010

The annual catch of Japanese sardine (Sardinops melanostictus) in Japan exceeded 4 million tons in the 1980s, but has sharply dropped to tens of thousands of tons in recent years.

The Pacific sardine group, which comprises the majority of the catch, was captured over large areas of the Pacific in the 1980s. However, the resource decreased to very low levels in the late 1990s, and the ground where fish are found and captured has been reduced to the area south of Joban.

The Fisheries Research Agency assesses the resource of S. melanostictus off the coast of northern Japan every autumn. Based on the distribution of 0-year old sardine last autumn, the year-class born in 2010 was found to be dominant compared to the levels in recent years. The sardine resource is still small compared to that in the 1980s, but a favorable catch is expected during and after the coming summer, when the group reaches 1 year old, and there is a high possibility of the fish appearing in the Sanriku fishing area.

Japanese sardine (Sardinops melanostictus)