A Tuna Once Sold For $1.8 Million – Why Bluefin Tuna Is So Expensive

A tuna once sold for $1.8 million, but you can get cans of tuna fish for less than $2 at the grocery store. So, what’s the difference?

Bluefin tuna is expensive because it’s in such high demand in Japan. a bluefin tuna caught off Long Island goes straight to Japan, where a 500-pound fish can sell for as much as $1.8 million.

Fresh, raw tuna reigns supreme in the culinary world these days, especially when it comes to sushi and sashimi. Bluefin tuna, known in Japan as hon-maguro or “true tuna,” is so popular that global stocks are dangerously low due to overfishing.

The popularity of bluefin tuna has skyrocketed since the 1950s because fishermen starting using nylon nets. Huge pelagic fish, bluefin tuna are incredibly strong and can destroy nets and swim off. Stronger nets meant that fishing fleets could harvest bluefin without losing the entire catch.