Fishy interlude: An amazingly detailed model of a Tsukiji market maguro (tuna) by Hobbystock

Since we are in the middle of the Fish section of Japanese Cooking 101, here's an interesting story about a plastic model of...a fish. Sounds weird, you say? Well you have to see this to believe it. It's made by a figurine and model maker called Hobbystock, and designed by a 3rd generation Tsukiji market wholesale company called Yamawa.

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The model is 33cm (about 13 inches) long. Not as big as a full size bluefin tuna at the Tsukiji Market - the type that fetches thousands of dollars - but still pretty hefty. It comes packaged in a realistic looking box, packed in styrofoam, rather like you might get a fresh fish direct from a supplier in Japan.

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And, it comes completely apart, exactly how a real tuna is cut up by a professional. It re-assembles again of course, and can be displayed on the included display stand.

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It looks like a neat way to teach your kids, or yourself too, how to cut up a fish, don't you think? Well..the kicker is that this amazingly detailed model costs 29,400 yen - that's about US$295. So it's clearly not a toy. Maybe an ultimate display item for a fish shop, or a sushi restaurant? It's not quite clear who the intended audience is for this. I'd love to take a look at it in person though.

You can see more pictures here, here and here. (Hat tip to Francesco.)

Comments

Looks like it's made to teach chefs how to cut up a tuna, doesn't it?

Wow, that is one good looking model! is it made out of plastic? I wonder whether they would be using it as a teaching tool to teach fishmongers (though I think cutting up a real fish would be a lot cheaper...) Thanks for sharing, you always have interesting posts!

In the case of a bluefin tuna, maybe this model is cheaper ^_^;

You know, I actually, think I have a theory about what this is for. It's a teaching aid.

No, wait-- hear me out. As highly respected as a sushi chef might be, they do have one person that they depend on above all others-- the fishmonger they must buy from. And even if they buy whole fish (unusual, but it does happen) they need to learn how to cut them up-- and often to teach others.

I think this might be like a medical model, to show new and aspiring fishmongers and chefs how to cut one up properly, and how to portion it.

Thoughts on this wild speculation?

I really don't know...I think it's still a toy, since you need to physically cut up a fish to know how to well, cut up a fish. Could be used for educational purposes, for sure.

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