TOKYO (AP) - Sushi chain operator Kiyoshi Kimura appears to have netted a real bargain, taking home a 507 pound (230 kilogram) bluefin tuna for a mere 7.3 million yen (about $73,000), a fraction of the price he paid last year at the year's first auction at the Tsukiji market in Tokyo.
The New Year's auction attracts high bids as a celebratory way to launch the new year, but Kimura's winning bid last year of 154.4 million yen for a 222 kilogram fish drew complaints that prices are beyond reasonable levels.
Kimura's Kiyomura Co. operates the popular Sushi-Zanmai restaurant chain. He said Sunday's price was "back to normal."
Environmentalists say growing worldwide consumption of bluefin tuna is leading to its depletion. Japanese eat about 80 percent of all bluefin tuna caught worldwide.
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