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First Eel Workshop

No. 1-2, Waipu, Kouhu Township, Yunlin County Taiwán, R.O.C
Many people don’t know that Punan Village in Kouhu Township is nicknamed “Hometown of Eels,” and it’s also the only community in Taiwan where the entire community raises eels. From the opening of the first eel pond in 1958 to 1975, at its peak, 96% of the village was engaged in eel farming, creating an economic miracle for Taiwan, but also establishing its reputation as the “Eel Kingdom.” As the name suggests, First Eel Workshop (literally, “Man-bo Number 1 Workshop”; man is a pun on “eel”) is the first eel pond in the hometown of eels. It has endured the most difficult years in the eel industry, and it also reflects  the spirit of Haikou people who are struggling, persevering, and not bowing to fate in the face of hardship.

Yen Chu-ying used to work on the Chu-Kuang Express as a train attendant after graduating from high school. She later worked as a mechanical designer after graduating from Taipei Technical College. By chance, she met Chen Chin-mou of the First Eel Workshop. When she visited Kouhu Township for the first time from the bustling city and saw the slippery eel, she thought to herself, “I’d never touch that even if you threatened to kill me.” She thought about leaving Kouhu behind; but she has a tenacious spirit. Keeping in line with “follow the man you marry, be he fish or fowl,” she joked “or be he eel.” In addition to following her husband's intensive research on farming techniques, she also promotes eel consumption. In 1996, they cooperated with the government to promote the traceability system, passed the SGS inspection, and used probiotics to treat the water quality. In addition to reducing water waste and contributing to environmental friendliness, their breeding rate is as high as 90%.

Eels from the First Eel Workshop are mainly exported to Japan. In recent years, Taiwanese eels have gained a good reputation in Japan. Eel contains vitamins A, E, EPA, and DHA and is rich in calcium, zinc, and collagen. It’s also known as an edible cosmetic and one of the secrets to Japanese longevity. But First Eel Workshop lamented that they worked so hard to raise safe, quality, and delicious eels, but the Taiwanese can’t eat them. So they resolutely and carefully selected the plumpest and most tender eels from their farms, and launched the “First Eel Rouge Eel," to promote and demystify the production of eels, share information like the breeding process, types of eels, the love for eels, and eel migrations, and how to cook eels to make them taste the best, in hopes of  that Taiwanese people can also feel the benefits of eel.

2012 Yunlin County Excellent Production and Marketing Class
Champion of Yunlin County Farmers' Association Farming Affairs presentation
2013 2013 Yunlin County Model Farmer
2013 National Top Ten Model Fishermen
2013 National Top Ten Excellent Agricultural Production and Marketing Classes
In 2014, honored as a National Production and Sales Experience Talent by the Council of Agriculture
In 2016, selected as a Quality Agricultural Village Product 
(Above text taken from First Eel Workshop website)

Savory Goodies: Rouge eel
Product: Kabayaki-grilled Eel Instant Pack
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