The "5 Million Yen Crab," a Tottori Prefecture Specially Selected Matsuba Itsuki-boshi Crab, has been Certified by the Guinness Book of World Records as the Most Expensive Crab Sold at Auction!

Tottori Prefecture

01/16/2020 11:00 am

Tottori Prefecture, known as Japan’s No. 1 crabbing prefecture, recorded a bid in the first auction on November 7 this year for a crab at a record-high amount of 5 million yen.
Tottori Prefecture applied for a Guinness World Record accreditation for “the most expensive crab sold at auction” with the specially selected “Tottori Matsuba Itsuki-boshi (Five Shining Pine Leaves) Crab, a top-class brand of crab.”

At the results presentation venue of “The Itsuki-boshi Challenge to Achieve a Guinness World Record!” held at Tottori and Okayama Shinbashi-kan (1-11-7, Shinbashi, Minato-ku, Tokyo) on December 23, Guinness World Records officials announced the results while Tetsuji Hamashita of K.K. Kanemasa Hamashita Shoten, who placed the winning bid for the “5-million-yen crab” at the auction, watched the live broadcast from Tottori Prefecture along with the Governor of the Prefecture Shinji Hirai, members of the comedy troupe Gambare Ruya, and other guests cheering for ‘Kanitori’ Prefecture (i.e., Tottori Prefecture). The result was that the Guinness World Records recognized that the crab had broken the record for the “most expensive crab sold at auction.”

Governor Shinji Hirai expressed his delight with a special joke as always, “Kanitori (crabbing) Prefecture is having a crabsolute shellebration!” as other people involved celebrated the certification of the Guinness World Records(R)*.
On January 6, 2020, Governor Hirai and Hyokkorihan, the chief of the Kanitori Prefecture Hyokkori Group, announced that they would be holding the “Tottori Matsuba ‘Sekaniichi’ (World’s No. 1 Crab) Memorial Campaign” at restaurants and seafood sales outlets in Tottori Prefecture to commemorate this special event.

* Guinness World Records(R) is a registered trademark of Guinness World Records.

Event Information

The Itsuki-boshi Challenge to Achieve a Guinness World Record! Results Presentation
Date: Monday, December 23, 2019, 11:00-11:50
Location: Tottori and Okayama Shinbashi-kan 2F Event Space (1-11-7, Shinbashi, Minato-ku, Tokyo)
Presenters: Shinji Hirai, Governor of Tottori Prefecture, Gambare Ruya, Hyokkorihan, Guinness official certification member
Main content:
A discussion between Governor Hirai and Gambare Ruya, guests cheering for ‘Kanitori’ Prefecture
Video letter by the “5-Million-Yen Crab” bidder, President Hamashita of K.K. Kanemasa Hamashita Shoten
Certification of the Guinness World Records for “the most expensive crab bid at auction”
Announcement of “Tottori Matsuba ‘Sekaniichi’ (World’s No. 1 Crab) Memorial Campaign”

Overview of the Itsuki-boshi Guinness World Record Update

■ Record name: The Most Expensive Crab Sold at Auction
■ Record of achievement: 5 million yen for one crab
■ Shell width: 146 mm
■ Weight: 1.24 kg
■ Fishing vessel: Kyoko-maru No. 2
■ Achievement location: Karo Branch of the Tottori Prefectural Fisheries Cooperative Association
■ Record Holder: K.K. Kanemasa Hamashita Shoten (winning bidder)
Representative: Tetsuji Hamashita
〒680-0908 4-1803-2, Karocho-nishi, Tottori City, Tottori Prefecture

Previous Guinness World Record

■ Record name: The Most Expensive Crab Sold at Auction
■ Record of achievement: 2 million yen for one crab
■ Achievement location: Karo Branch of the Tottori Prefectural Fisheries Cooperative Association
■ Record holder: Kanemasa Hamashita Shoten (winning bidder)
Representative: Tetsuji Hamashita

About the Tottori Matsuba ‘Sekaniichi’ (World’s No. 1 Crab) Memorial Campaign, “Crabs♪ Let’s feast! Campaign”

Event period: January 6 (Monday) to February 29 (Saturday), 2020
Venue: Restaurants and seafood sales outlets in Tottori Prefecture
Contents: Approximately 30 shops in Tottori Prefecture targeted for the campaign (restaurants and fishery products)
Among those who purchased a crab meal or crab at a direct sales office and applied for a lottery draw, we will present 100 winners with Tottori Prefecture’s specialty products.
1st: Matsuba Crab, 5 People
2nd: Crab Miso Bagna Cauda + Tottori Prefecture brand rice “Hoshizoramai” 2 kg, 45 people
3rd: Shiopon vinegar from Kanitori Prefecture, 50 people

Crabs♪ Let’s feast! Campaign site

Comments from Presenters

◆ Gambare Ruya’s Mahiru-san (from Tottori Prefecture)
When I saw on the news that a Matsuba Crab in Tottori Prefecture had been bought for a bid of 5 million yen, I was really surprised; but of course, I was proud that it was a crab from Tottori! As a native of Tottori Prefecture, the Guinness World Record certification is a joy on par with the birth of a child!
◆ Gambare Ruya’s Yoshiko-san
Today, Ma-chan’s native Tottori Prefecture was accredited for a Guinness World Record, so I came in a red dress with a picture of the 5-million-yen crab.
Congratulations to everyone in Tottori Prefecture, Governor Hirai, and to the best crab in the world!
◆ Hyokkorihan-san
I love all crabs, but the crabs in Tottori are really delicious.
Tottori Prefecture is home to wonderful seas and mountains, and there are also excellent hot springs; it’s the perfect place for everyone to go for natural wonders and delicious crabs!
◆ Shinji Hirai, Governor of Tottori Prefecture
“Tottori Prefecture is currently in the middle of crabbing season, and we are changing our name to ‘Kanitori (crabbing) Prefecture.’ The Itsuki-boshi (Five Shining Pine Leaves) crabs have a shell width of 13.5 cm or more and weigh 1.2 kg or more. Only crabs that meet five criteria including the two previously mentioned are certified, so this is a very rare, top-class brand. Thanks to everyone in Tottori Prefecture who loves crabs we have become number one in the world, so thank you very much!
It’s the most delicious season for crabs right now. From January 6th next year, Tottori Matsuba will start the “Tottori Matsuba ‘Sekaniichi’ (World’s No. 1 Crab) Memorial Campaign.” I hope many people will come to Tottori Prefecture, the prefecture of Sekaniichi Crab, to taste it.”

―Reference data―

Tottori Prefecture, Japan’s Best Place for Crabs

“Why is Tottori Prefecture ‘Kanitori Prefecture’?”
Approximately half of all crabs in Japan (7,682 tons*) are caught in Tottori Prefecture. In addition, the prefecture is the “best in Japan” in many things crab related, such as volume of shipments and consumption. To spread awareness, we are renaming the prefecture “Kanitori Prefecture” for crabbing season to promote PR!
* 2017 Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries Distribution Survey

“What is “Itsuki-boshi,” the specially selected Tottori Matsuba (pine leaves)?”
It is the finest brand of crab, the painstakingly selected “Matsuba,” which must clear stringent standards as to size, weight, quality, etc.
At the time of selection, the crab must have a shell 13.5 cm or wider, weigh more than 1.2 kg and have all its legs. Criteria for judgment include the vividness of the colors and the solidity of the body.
Itsuki-boshi that satisfy these conditions are extremely rare – only two out of every ten thousand (0.02%*) – and therefore have a very high market value.
* 2018 Fishing season

▽More about “Kanitori Prefecture” and “Itsuki-boshi”

Kanitori Prefecture Welcani Campaign Under Way!

In Tottori Prefecture, the “Kanitori Prefecture Welcani Campaign” is being held until the end of February 2020. In the campaign, 100 people every month, selected from guests staying in the prefecture and applying for a lottery draw, will receive a seasonal crab. Please take this opportunity to savor the Matsuba, the best quality crab in the world.

In addition, we have prepared some fun social network projects to win crabs, such as the prefecture’s tour photo rally and the Kanitori Prefecture quiz inspired by Hyokori Hanno’s “Kanitori Gymnastics Video.” We want to welcome you, your family and friends to Kanitori Prefecture for Welcani!

▽ Click here for more information on the “Kanitori Prefecture Welcani Campaign”

▽ Meet the 2 million yen crab! “Tottoriga Karo Kanikko Kan” related info

Contact for inquiries about news release:
Person in charge: Naoki Haneda,
Market and Export Expansion Division, Tottori Prefectural Government
TEL: 0857-26-7767 / FAX: 0857-21-0609