The Great Fish Market Migration of 2018

All photos by Mizuho Miyazaki | courtesy Sankei Photo

Last weekend will forever be known as The Great Fish Market Migration of 2018. At least that’s what we’re calling it. On the afternoon of October 6, 2018, Tokyo’s Tsukiji Fish Market held its final tuna auction and the market was shuttered, officially ushering in the end of an era. However, the work was far from over. As soon as their customers had vacated the premises, workers quickly began preparing to move to the new Toyosu location, a feat that involves relocating all their supplies and equipment 2.3 km (1.4 mi) away, before the new market  opens for business on October 11.

Included in that equipment is a total of 2600 motorized carts and forklifts which had to be driven to the new market. So at 5 am on October 7, before the sun rose, police closed off public roads and the carts and forklifts set off on their great migration, traveling at an underwhelming speed of 15 km/hr, or just under 10 mph. Photographer Mizuho Miyazaki captured the sight, which was quite beautiful and sentimental. The vehicles arrived at the new market, just as the sun was rising.

Before entering the new premises, all vehicles were disinfected after having traveled on public roads. If you’re in Tokyo this week, you’ll probably notice that many sushi shops are closed due to the supply interruption. We’re thinking this is probably going to be one of the longest vacations that sushi chefs have ever had.

Below is some video footage of the move:


  1. Why are they moving into the new venue?

    • Jim – my understanding is that the old venue was being torn down to make way for olympic facilities ahead of the Tokyo 2020 Olympics.

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