Eel is a very popular food in Japan. It is so popular that it is very difficult for the supply of eel to meet demand for it, especially in any kind of a sustainable or environmentally friendly way. In order to combat that problem, one Japanese professor decided to see if he could fix it by taking a fish that nobody wanted and making it taste just like a fish that everybody wanted, and now he says he has made a catfish that tastes just like eel.
According to Rocket News 24, catfish is very unpopular in Japan. Japan has access to a lot of varieties of very good, fresh seafood, and nobody wants to eat those pungent bottom-feeders.
Professor Masahiko Ariji of Kinki University saw that as an opportunity. He figured that he could make catfish taste better if he just farmed it in a cleaner environment. That worked pretty well, but Ariji specifically wanted to make the catfish taste like eel, and that took a lot more time.
Ariji reportedly went through 300 different food combinations to adjust the fattiness and flavor of his catfish. He said the fish were not given any special chemicals or medicines or genetically modified to be creepy eel-catfish hybrids. He really just fed them on fish pellets and changed the combinations of the fish food that made up their diet until they started to taste like eel.
The eel-flavored catfish is expected to go on sale at the end of the year.