An innovative seafood e-commerce site launched by the Tobu fisherman's cooperative near Tokyo allows Internet-savvy buyers to bypass the middleman to snag the freshest fish possible. Using cell phone cameras and shipboard computers with wireless connections, the fishermen photograph their catch and upload the pics to their website, along with the retail prices.
Buyers order online, then wait at the dock for the boats - and their seafood - to return from the still waters of Tokyo Bay to their home port at Yokosuka. Earlybird buyers get a bonus: orders accepted before 9am are delivered to their home or business by 9pm the same day at no charge.
Both seafood buyers and fishermen benefit from the so-called "Internet Net", as prices are generally lower without the usual middlemen (brokers, wholesalers and auctioneers) taking their cut.
According to Asiajin, "Fuud Corporation, a Tokyo tech start-up specializing in developing system solutions supporting agricultural and fishery business, assisted the cooperative with developing the system."
Fresh seafood at a lower price for buyers; fishermen keeping a bigger piece of the pie - sounds like a solution that works for everyone involved... except the fish, of course.