Seafood has always been a key Norwegian export item, as Norway is the world’s second largest exporter of seafood and it is the world’s largest exporter of both farmed salmon and cod. Norway exports seafood to more than 130 different countries all across the world and seafood is one of the three most important export items from Norway.
Brazil is the largest market for Norwegian bacalhau and final destination of approximately 1/3 of the total global export of bacalhau from Norway. This relation dates back to 1842, when a Norwegian ship traded bacalhau for Brazilian coffee. The Norwegian seafood exports to Brazil accounted for NOK 852 million in 201, representing around 20% of the total Norwegian exports to Brazil.
The majority of the export of Norwegian Seafood to Brazil is bacalhau, but also some herring and King Crab are exported to Brazil. Norway exports four types of bacalhau to Brazil: the authentic bacalhau made of salted and dried cod, and three other types made of fish from the same family; saithe, ling and tusk.
Promoting Norwegian seafood around the world
The Norwegian Seafood Council (NSC) works to ensure that people from all corners of the world know that the best seafood comes from Norway. The organization is owned by the Norwegian Ministry of Fisheries and Coastal Affairs and its head office is located in Tromsø. NSC operates in 14 markets abroad, including Brazil.
NSC works to increase the frequency of consumption of bacalhau especially outside Christmas and Easter. Nevertheless, to increase the eating frequency NSC runs two campaigns in low season too, during Mother’s day and Father’s Day. Outdoor media, newspaper advertising and social media has been used in the campaigns in addition to tastings and promotion material in the stores. Both low season campaigns were successful and increased the sales considerably in the participant stores.
It is also an important goal for the Norwegian Seafood Council to increase the preference for the Norwegian bacalhau in order to secure the market share in the category. The competition from Portuguese and Chinese producers of cheaper and more convenient products have been increasing the last couple of years, so it has become increasingly important to maintain the Norwegian market share.
Moreover, NSC takes a group of Brazilian journalists to Norway every year for them to experience Norway and write about its nature and culture, with focus on sustainability and fantastic seafood. In the last years, this press trip has been organized in cooperation with Innovation Norway in order to combine tourism and seafood in the same trip. In August 2014, journalists from the most important newspapers in Brazil visited Ålesund, Lofoten and Oslo as part of this project.
New Seafood Trainee in Rio de Janeiro
Innovation Norway offers a Seafood Trainee program for Norwegian seafood companies with international focus. The trainee experience may last 4-12 months and the trainee gets practical knowledge of the market and the customers’ needs.
Johannes Høyberg started as seafood trainee in Innovation Norway’s office in Rio de Janeiro in October 2014. Johannes will use most of his time to learn about the Brazilian seafood market and language, but will also be involved in projects in different areas.
In 2011, our office in Rio de Janeiro received its first Seafood Trainee, who spent six months in Rio de Janeiro, São Paulo and Salvador learning about the omega-3 market in Brazil.
“Based in Innovation Norway’s office in Rio de Janeiro, I learned about the Brazilian market and was given a thorough introduction to the local business culture. The trainee program was a fantastic opportunity both for my personal experience and for my company’s further work in Brazil. The personal contact one establishes with potential customers and cooperation partners, and the understanding one gets for their work and market are invaluable. This unique possibility can be highly recommended and I hope many others get the opportunity to join the Seafood Trainne program.” – Jan A. Bjørge, Bjørge Ocean
This video tells the story of another former seafood trainee, Liv Margrethe Hansen, from the company Halvors Tradisjonsfisk. She worked based in our Italian office.