Asia-Pacific News

What a catch: Man pays $37,500 for huge tuna

Bluefin tuna nets $37,500
Bluefin tuna nets $37,500

A single Bluefin tuna has sold for $37,500 in the first fish auction of the year this weekend in Toyko, Japan, according to media reports.

The 400-pound (180kg) fish was bought by Kiyoshi Kimura, the owner of a Japanese sushi chain, AP news agency reported. It is the fourth year in a row that he has bid for – and won -- the first fish of the auction, which is said to bring good luck.

In the first fish auction of 2013, Kimura paid a record-breaking $1.76 million for a 222 kilogram tuna, according to The Wall Street Journal.

The popularity of tuna for sushi and sashimi -- thinly sliced raw meat or fish, like tuna or salmon -- has caused global stocks of tuna to decline and prices to soar.

In November, fears over tuna stocks prompted the International Union for Conservation of Nature to designate the Pacific bluefin species of tuna as threatened by extinction.

The correlation between rare, sought-after foodstuffs and high prices is nothing new. In December, a giant white truffle sold for $61,250 at an auction in New York. The truffle was sold to a food and wine lover in Taiwan, proving that for the bon viveur, money is no object.

- By CNBC's Holly Ellyatt, follow her on Twitter @HollyEllyatt.