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What To Know Before Eating The Deadly Fugu Fish

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For those taking a trip to Japan who are daring enough to try the deadly fugu fish, there are a few things you should know beforehand. To safely consume this Japanese delicacy, keep these tips in mind: Note: This information has been adapted from “Lonely Planet’s Book Of Everything” by Nigel Holmes
  • Fugu, also known as the pufferfish, globefish and blowfish, is served in 3,800 different restaurants around Japan
  • In order to be authorized to prepare fugu, a chef must go through rigorous training that takes years. In fact, at the end of the training the chef must prepare the fish for human consumption and then eat it himself/herself. Make sure that when ordering, you ask to see the chef’s certification to be safe.
  • The poison is located in the fish’s skin, ovaries, skeleton and intestines, mainly the liver. If properly prepared, the poison is washed out and it is safe to eat; however, never eat the liver. This is extremely dangerous and illegal.
  • Some people enjoy eating fugu with a bit of poison left inside to experience a tingling of the lips. This is dangerous and should not be done. There is no cure for fugu poisoning, and because the central nervous system shuts down gradually when infected with the fugu’s poison, you won’t know until it’s too late anyway.
  • If you’d like to experience fugu in a safer way, you can find lanterns, toys and wallets made of fugu skin in Japan.
To read more fugu-eating tips, head to

About Jessie Festa

Jessie Festa is a New York-based travel content creator who is passionate about empowering her audience to experience new places and live a life of adventure. She is the founder of the solo female travel blog, Jessie on a Journey, and is editor-in-chief of Epicure & Culture, an online conscious tourism magazine. Along with writing, Jessie is a professional photographer and is the owner of NYC Photo Journeys, which offers New York photo tours, photo shoots, and wedding photography. Her work has appeared in publications like USA Today, CNN, Business Insider, Thrillist, and WestJet Magazine.

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  1. Audrey | That Backpacker on at 7:56 am

    I think I would probably steer clear of that fish. I like sushi, but this is one risk I just wouldn’t be willing to take.

    • jess2716 on at 4:41 pm

      Agreed. Some things are just a little too adventurous 🙂

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