24 Jun 2012

Fish restrictions relaxed

9:56 am on 24 June 2012

Japan has relaxed tough restrictions governing the preparation of poisonous puffer fish.

Fugu (Japanese blowfish) is considered a delicacy, but need to be served with extreme care because the organs are so poisonous they can kill.

Only highly trained chefs have been licensed to prepare fugu. Chefs have to train for two years and pass a test.

By law, they must cut out toxic parts including the liver and skin.

But now the Tokyo metropolitan government is relaxing its restrictions and allowing unlicensed chefs to process and sell the fish, which sells for $A100 per plate.

The ABC reports there were more than 330 food poisoning cases related to eating fugu in Japan in the last decade, with 23 fatalities.

Most of the victims had prepared the fish themselves.