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Fukuoka Ariake Seaweed

Play time
5:30

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Time to learn about Fukuoka Ariake Seaweed!

Fukuoka Prefecture's Ariake Sea is among the best areas for seaweed harvesting in all of Japan.
Raised in the nutrient-rich Ariake Sea, Fukuoka Ariake Seaweed is renowned for it's pleasant smell, melt-in-your-mouth feeling, and a umami that spreads across your tongue.

Make sure to taste it for yourself!

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Today I'm in Yanagawa, which is right on the Ariake Sea.
You can see a lot of poles on the other side over there.

I wonder what those are.

They seem to be cultivating something from the sea. What could be cultivated from this sea?

Mr. Sakai has brought me over to the area where the poles are.

Mr. Sakai, what are these poles cultivating?

These are cultivating seaweed.

So this thing that's stuck to the nets is seaweed?

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Fukuoka Prefecture's Ariake Sea is among the best seaweed harvesting areas in all of Japan.

Raised in the nutrient-rich Ariake Sea, Fukuoka Ariake Seaweed is renowned for it's pleasant smell, melt-in-your-mouth feeling, and a umami that spreads across your tongue.

In November of 2016, in a PR move to make it easier to tie in the harvesting area to the product, the name was changed to Fukuoka Ariake Seaweed.

Seaweed is raised in oyster shells from spring to summer.

They are bred in October on the nets.

They are harvested once they are about 20-30 cm.

They're generally harvested between November and March.

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Mr. Sakai, please tell me a little bit about Fukuoka Ariake Seaweed.

Fukuoka Ariake Seaweed is raised where the nutrient-rich Chikugo and Yabe Rivers meet, and features Japan's most fragrant and tasty seaweed lavers.

Right now it's high tide so the nets are in the water. There's a 6 meter sea level difference between high tide and low tide so during low tide the seaweed is dried above the water.

This drying process is especially important and it's one of the main reasons Fukuoka Ariake Seaweed has such a pleasant aroma and that melt-in-your-mouth feeling.

It's made to taste good with the power of nature!

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Next, I visited the Ariake Fishermen's Co-op's Drying Facility.

I've come to see how they make seaweed into the flat rectangle that we're used to seeing. There's so much seaweed here!

First we take the seaweed and mince it. Once we dry it, it takes the form you see here.

Wow so this is the process.

Once the seaweed passes inspection, companies that handle seaweed lavers come from all over Japan to the Fukuoka Ariake Fishermen's Co-op to bid on the seaweed and from there they make it to your dinner table.

I see.

By the way, would you like to eat some?

May I? I'm so excited!
 

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How do you recommend I eat this Fukuoka Ariake Seaweed?

Of course you can eat it as is and it's very good like that but it's even better if you roast it, as it gives off a very pleasant aroma. Roasted, ok.

You don't want to overdo it so just 5 seconds in a toaster oven is perfect.

Here you go.

Ok, I'm going to eat it just like this. It's really good!

I can experience the umami flavor all throughout my mouth.

I also recommend Fukuoka Ariake Seaweed soup.

Soup?

The umami of the seaweed melts right into the hot soup.

Another great thing is that it's very easy to make.

So how do you make it?

・First you put ume paste into a cup/bowl
・Next you put in some dried bonito shavings
・Then you tear off pieces of the seaweed and add them
・Finally you add the hot water and mix it all together. That's it!
・You can vary the portions based on your preferences.

Here you go.

Thank you, it smells so good!

The seaweed is runny; this is really good!
On a cold day it really warms you up.

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To learn more about where to purchase Fukuoka Ariake Seaweed, please refer to the Ariake Fishermen's Co-op home page.

You can also order seaweed online!

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Check out the delicious Fukuoka Ariake Seaweed for yourself, raised in the nutritious confines of the Ariake sea!