Japan plans to initiate a trial project for processing scallops in Mexico in order to meet the demand of the US market.

Japan plans to initiate a trial project for processing scallops in Mexico

The Japan Trade Revitalization Agency (JETRO) has recently announced plans to initiate a pilot project for processing scallops in Mexico next year and then supplying the processed products to the US market. This is part of the Japanese government’s strategy to address China’s comprehensive import ban on Japanese seafood by seeking new processing channels for international market supply.

As reported on December 21st by CNN, the US news channel began airing television commercials on December 19th to promote scallops and other seafood from Japan. These commercials were created by the Japan Food Overseas Promotion Center (JFOODO), which was established in 2017 with a focus on promoting Japan’s agricultural, forestry, fishery products, and international exports of other foods. The goal of the commercials is to introduce the various cooking methods and rich flavors of scallops, as well as to showcase the natural beauty of Japanese fishing villages in order to attract American consumers.

The pilot project is set to commence in February of next year in Ensenada, Baja California, Mexico. Frozen scallops transported from Hokkaido will be used as raw materials for processing in Mexico, including shelling, freshness inspection, and safety assessment.

Additionally, JETRO is planning to conduct negotiations with American businesspeople in Los Angeles in March 2024 to discuss the potential commercial advantages of Japanese scallops processed in Mexico.

These measures are part of the Japanese government’s efforts to mitigate the impact on the Japanese seafood trade caused by the release of contaminated water from the Fukushima 1 nuclear power plant.

According to data, the total export value of Japanese scallops in 2022 reached 911 billion yen (approximately 636.6 million US dollars), with about half of them being exported to China for reprocessing before being exported to the United States. Currently, the Japanese government and relevant institutions are working to shift this processing link from China to other countries for export to the United States, and are increasing promotional and supply efforts to the US market.

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