GENERAL SANTOS CITY (MindaNews / 31 July) – The city is now the record holder for the world’s largest fish display, officials here said, although Guinness World Records has yet to make the official announcement.
Organizers of the annual Tuna Festival here said Thursday the Guinness World Records has finally approved the city’s display of around 25.5 metric tons (MT) of tuna on Sept. 11 last year as a new world record.
The world record bid was the highlight of the 2014 or 16th Tuna Festival, which was co-organized by the city government and the Philippine Fisheries Development Authority (PFDA)-General Santos Fish Port Complex (GSFPC).
Paris Ayon, food safety chief of the GSFPC and 16th Tuna Festival assistant director, said they earlier got wind of Guinness’ decision in a note posted at its website.
“We saw it in its dashboard so we immediately verified it with Guinness,” he told MindaNews.
The festival’s secretariat noted that a Guinness representative later confirmed the matter in response to an email inquiry that it sent.
“I can confirm that your record is approved with the following text: The largest fish display consists of 25,594.49 kg (56,426 lb 3 oz) of yellowfin tuna and was achieved by the City of General Santos (Philippines) in General Santos City, South Cotabato, Philippines, on 11 September 2014. A certificate was sent to you,” read Guinness’ email confirmation as posted in the festival’s Facebook page.
Guinness, however, has not yet made an official announcement of the feat that is usually posted in its website.
“We’re also waiting for the copy of the certificate so we can make an official declaration,” Ayon said.
He confirmed that the city officials have initially signified to put up a marker of the world record at the city fish port complex in Barangay Tambler.
The world record bid was made last year by fish port workers who were able to display and weigh around 33,610 kilograms or 33.61 MT in about 15 minutes.
Such figure was based on official records of the PFDA-GSFPC.
As early as 5 a.m., workers at the city fish port complex started unloading various tuna species from around 20 fishing boats that landed at the port.
Each fishing boat unloaded an average 60 pieces of tuna that weighed about 20 kilograms and above.
The freshly-landed tuna were initially displayed at the bidding tables of the fishport’s market 1 and later weighed by the workers with the use of Azuki digital weighing scales.
The event was not witnessed by an adjudicator from Guinness but the entire activity was properly documented through official records, photographs and videos.
Personnel from the AMA Computer College here documented the weighing of the tuna catches.
Guinness has no specific world record for the largest fish display but it acknowledged the largest seafood display established by Schmidt Zeevis and Wichter Steller of Schmidt Zeevis in Rotterdam, Netherlands on June 26, 2011.
The display consisted of 2,271.7 kg or 5,008 lb of seafood that was achieved with the help of executive chef Erik Troost and his team on the Lido deck of the SS Rotterdam, Guinness said.
Dubbed the “Tuna Capital of the Philippines,” the city is currently the country’s top source of fresh and processed tuna exports.
It is home to six of the country’s seven tuna canneries and other related ventures that generate average annual export receipts of nearly US$ 300 million.