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Salty dogs watch fish prices online

Man on phone
More mackerel now - buy, buy buy...

As fish supplies dwindle and competition among commercial fishing boats intensifies, a group of Japanese trawlermen have turned to the internet to give themselves an edge.

A cooperative in Kanazawa, on Japan's west coast, has established a mobile website that delivers data from the all-important on-shore market to vessels at sea about what catches are selling well and what else might be needed.

Avoids oversupply

The site receives updates from the market about sales volumes and prices so that boat skippers can avoid returning with holds full of over-abundant fish of a particular kind.

For example, if they find that the local market has a glut of prawns, they can move to find cod or other catches that are in demand.

Enough mackerel, thanks

A quick check on the site at the time of writing – you can see the Japanese-language site for yourself on a PC too – showed that Spanish mackerel were going for a top price of ¥800 (£3.90) per kilo, but that a huge catch was pushing the price down quickly.

In future, the cooperative wants to have fisherman post live catch results on the site and possibly to even cut out the market altogether. We bet the fish are overjoyed.