In conjunction with the recent boom in the popularity of Tsukiji the number of tourists, including foreign visitors, paying a visit to the market is increasing. Experiencing the vibrant Tsukiji market presents a great opportunity for learning about the functions of the central wholesale market and the current perishables distribution system, but the both the wholesaling and reselling areas are busy places during the early morning hours.
Various problems have arisen in association with the increased number of tourists (including sanitation management problems such as temperature control issues caused by the entry and exit of large numbers of unauthorized persons, and problems with visitors impeding the auction and other trading activities), especially at the early morning auction held in the tuna wholesale area. For these reasons, tourists are currently not allowed to enter the tuna wholesaling areas.
To prevent any impediment to trading activities and to ensure food safety, these areas are closed to visitors and entering them in the early morning hours is not allowed.
Since the market is very busy with trucks, forklifts, and small vehicles moving about, guests are asked to be especially careful and vigilant when they visit.
Public guided-tours of Tsukiji Market are only available for groups of students (elementary school, junior and senior high school) and reservations may be made from 9:00 am to 3:00 pm. There are no public tours for other visitors or in other time periods.
If you visit the market we ask that you observe the above stated rules. Your cooperation and understanding regarding this matter are greatly appreciated.
Tokyo Central Wholesale Market, ga Kitchen for 12 - Million people in Tokyo,h plays a vital role in the distribution of perishable foods to Metropolitan citizens.
|At 5:00 p.m. the market begins to receive shipments. Fresh foods and other products pour in from various parts of the world by truck, plane and ship until late at night.|
Receiving ( late at night )
Preliminary inspection ( 3:00 a.m. )
|At 3:00 a.m. before daybreak, wholesalers lay out the goods in preparation for the start of the auction.Before auction, middlemen carefully examine the quality of the goods and estimate the price.|
|At 5:30 a.m. the tuna auction starts. gHow much do you bid?h The auctioneer of a wholesale firm asks in a loud voice. Answering this, a lot of middlemen and authorized buyers bid against each other. The tuna received on the day sell out rapidly.|
Auction ( 5:30-9:00 a.m.)
Middlemen ( 7:00-11:00 a.m. )
|At 7:00 a.m. the goods sold at auction are immediately taken away by the middlemen. They carry the goods they have bought to their own stalls and lay them out so that caterers and other purchasers can buy them easily.|
|At 8:00 a.m. retailers load the goods which they have bought at auction or from middlemen into their trucks and carry them back to their own shops in town. Between 8:00 and 10:00 a.m. so many people come and go around the market that it becomes awfully crowded.|
Loading ( 8:00-10:00 a.m. )
|At 11:00 a.m. middlemen begin to tidy up their shops. Closing time is drawing near.|
|At 1:00 p.m., at the peak of activity in the metropolis, the market has a short quiet time of rest while it is cleaned out. Heaps of styrofoam are heat-treated and recycled and the cleaning is finished by a sprinkler truck spraying water. The market is now cleaned up and ready for the next dayfs transactions.|
Cleaning by a sprinkler truck ( 1:00 p.m. )