Atum bate recorde de preço em leilão no Japão

A chef cuts the bluefin tuna. Direito de imagem Reuters
Image caption A chef cuts the bluefin tuna.

A bluefin tuna has been sold at a Tokyo market for nearly three-quarters of a million dollars, the most ever paid for a single fish. The 269kg tuna was bought by a local restaurant owner.

Reportagem Roland Buerk

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The first auction of the New Year at Tokyo's Tsukiji fish market is always closely watched - high prices are a tradition.

But when the bidding was over the bluefin tuna had become the most expensive fish in history - 56.49m yen, nearly three-quarters of a million dollars.

It smashed the previous record set last year of 32.49m yen.

The buyer was the owner of a chain of sushi restaurants. He said he wanted to liven up Japan and help the nation recover from last year's earthquake and tsunami.

The fish was caught off Aomori, just north of the coast battered by the disaster.

At 269kg it's a giant. But even so when cut up into sushi each mouthful works out at 5,000 yen, more than $65.

The restaurant chain though will sell it for its usual tuna prices, between $1.60 and $5.40 per piece, depending on the cut.

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auction (leilão, venda pública na qual a pessoa que oferecer o melhor preço recebe o ítem) public sale where the person who offers most money receives the goods

closely watched (aompanhado com atenção especial, olhado de perto) followed with particular attention

the bidding (lance, a oferta de preço de compra num leilão) the offering of money at an auction

smashed (a record) (quebrou facilmente (um recorde anteiror), destruiu) easily broke (a record)

a chain (uma cadeia, um grupo de restaurantes com a mesma aparência, nome e que têm a mesma administração central) a group of restaurants with a similar appearance, named and shared central management

to liven up (trazer felicidade e alegria) to bring happiness and cheer

recover (voltar ao modo que era antes (antes de um desastre, doença, etc.), recuperar) to go back to the way it was (before a disaster, illness, etc.)

battered by (something) (duramente afetado por (algo)) badly affected by (something)

mouthful (uma porção de alimento pequena o suficiente para ser comida em uma só mordida) a piece of food small enough to be eaten in one bite

works out at (calcula-se que é) is calculated to be