Norway urged to process more of its fish


NORWEGIAN fishing and salmon farming companies are facing growing demands to process more of the fish produce at home.
Part of the crusade is environmentally based and part is on economic grounds because changing tactics would not only reduce the carbon footprint, but it would create hundreds of local jobs.
In Britain, the practice is called ‘China traffic’ but in Norway it is known as ‘Kinaffic’, where thousands of tonnes of seafood are sent halfway around the world for processing or coating before being returned to the respective home countries, often in familiar brand packages.
The cause has recently been championed by the Norwegian TV journalist and presenter Arne Hjeltnes, who told a coastal fishing conference in Tromsø that in the two years between 2013 and 2015, some 700,000 tonnes of fish – both farmed and wild caught – went out of the country unprocessed.
‘That is not good – it far too much,’ he said.
In a subsequent interview with the regional newspaper, he said that by processing at home instead of sending overseas the country could earn more and do more.
Currently, a lot of the fish being shipped or flown to China comes back labelled ‘fresh’, when strictly speaking it is not.
The increasing use of modern robotic technology now made it more economic and efficient to process in Norway.
Hjeltne, who has also worked as a marketing consultant, told that companies in Norway were starting to sit up and take notice. He mentioned Lerøy Seafood, which will soon be opening a new processing factory in Båtsfjord.


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