Fresh fish

Canadian chefs import needled fish from Japan.

An acupunctured fish first falls into a sort of coma: It is brain-dead but can breathe weakly, and its central nervous functions continue during most of the overnight flight to Canada.

The fish dies in transit after about 12 hours, as oxygen reserves supplied by a saltwater-soaked padded envelope are depleted. But for several hours more, its flesh behaves as if it were still alive, the company says. In essence, the fish has become a zombie, existing in a twilight state between life and death, its normal processes of cellular decomposition arrested by those strategic pinpricks.

The final stop: on the dinner plate at restaurants such as Vancouver’s the Sandbar Restaurant, Ajisai Restaurant, Yoshi Japanese Restaurant and several other venues in Richmond and Coquitlam that are turning British Columbia into a hot spot for acupunctured fish.


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