As the international demand for marine products increases, exports expand, and concerns about the
management of resources and sustainable fisheries grow, it becomes increasingly essential to improve
hygiene and quality management in fishing ports, as well as the efficiency of and traceability of market
transactions. While fishing ports and markets go about installing facilities and equipment for hygiene
management in a systematic manner, however, it is true that, aside from those in a small number of
locations, transaction procedures in most fish markets remain utterly dependent on handwritten paper
forms such as order slips. Japan’s population is graying and dwindling and fishing communities are faced
with their rapid declining and aging population. Therefore, it is necessary to promote the computerization
for the operations of fish markets, particularly for the handling of market transactions.
This will be beneficial for reducing time and labor, as well as improving traceability and resource
management. This report provides the results of a quantitative analysis of the benefits of the
computerization for the operations of the Ofunato fish market where the market transactions were
monitored with Internet Protocol （IP）cameras and visual observations were also made during the peak
fishing season in October 2018.
The number of the assigned personnel has slightly decreased from 22 to 20 persons, and the total
scheduled work time has shrunk by 12% from 213 to 188 hours. The time spent in actual labor has fallen
from 213 to 158 hours, which is a 26% decrease. Bidding time （or lead time）has been shortened by about
half an hour. The savings in the buyers’time spent in the main market building for the purchase of fish
have been estimated at between 24 and 30 minutes （20–25%）. We anticipate carrying out similar
analyses in other advanced markets in the future and also look forward to improving the accuracy of the
aforementioned analytical procedures.