Strong interest in mackerel and Icelandic sustainability label
‘Attendance at our stand has been more than we could have hoped for. We have had the chance to meet our established customers and we have also seen a lot of visitors keen to set up a business relationship. There has been a lot of interest in mackerel, and it’s clear that people are aware that Icelandic producers intend to increase significantly their production of mackerel for human consumption this year,’ said HB Grandi’s marketing manager Svavar Svavarsson when we spoke to him a few hours into this year’s ESE in Brussels.
He commented that while there had been concerns that the number of visitors would be affected by the uncertainty of air transport following the volcanic eruption and people would cancel their travel, but he said that these fears had been groundless.
‘As well as the interest in our products, there has also been interest in the new Icelandic sustainability label that has been promoted on the Icelandic companies’ stands as well as by the Trade Council. Buyers are very keen to have products labelled as having been caught under a sustainable management regime. We expect to have cod certified this summer, followed by saithe and redfish. So there are some exciting developments taking place,’ Svavar Svavarsson said.
As already reported here, Akranes master chef Thórdur Thrastarson has been working his seafood magic at the HB Grandi stand in Brussels, to the delight of visitors. According to Thórdur’s father Thröstur Reynisson, who is also HB Grandi’s plant manager at the Akranes factory, around 90kg of Icelandic cod, redfish and saithe is being used on each of the three exhibition days. This is equivalent to 3000 portions of special fish treats that anyone passing the HB Grandi stand can stop and taste.