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Findus Farmed Cod Helps Tackle Over-Fishing Issue

With wild cod stocks dwindling, and no let up in consumer demand for the species, Findus is helping provide a solution for ethical shoppers.

Findus Ltd. has launched Findus Frozen Farmed Cod from Norway to ease the pressure on the oceans' dwindling cod populations, as a result of over-fishing.

The move is just the latest initiative by the company, which has recently launched a range of restaurant-quality ready meals in conjunction with celebrity chef Jean Christophe Novelli and also launched MEGA03, the omega-3 rich fish oil supplement endorsed by the David Beckham Academy.

The product, which has been launched in Sainsbury's and Tesco’s frozen aisles, is set to provide both ethically and environmentally concerned consumers with their favourite fish once more.

Commenting on the move commercial director of Findus Ltd., Vidar Engen, says: “Our seas cannot keep up with the demands we are making on them and, at Findus, we felt very strongly it was time to take a proactive stance on creating sustainably farmed sources of cod.

"We all know cod is the UK's favourite fish and we think tackling the issue of strained cod supplies by providing a farmed alternative is more realistic than expecting consumers to switch to other species.

"We have invested a lot of time and money in ensuring that this cod is kept in a humane manner, and in closely monitored conditions, to make sure customers get the best produce and the fish get the best environment.

“Findus is very proud of this initiative, which has been a long time in the making, and we look forward to making further announcements about our plans for the company soon.”

'Findus Sustainable Fishing - Pure Quality with a Conscience'

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For further information please contact:

Zara Reid, Rose Reid Media
T: 05600752008
M: 07831 817777
E: zara@rosereidmedia.com

Notes to Editors:

1. Where in Norway is the cod farm?

The Viking island of Leka is situated some 300 km north of Trondheim and only 120 km south of the Polar Circle

2. How is the fish farm monitored and regulated?

Shifts of farmers are on duty 16 hours per day and they monitor cages from above the surface, watch fish movements and environment.
There are also cameras below the water and feed monitoring systems. Fish farming in Norway is highly regulated with laws about environment, density, health, animal welfare and plenty of reporting to various public bodies.

3. How closely does it mirror cod's natural environment?

Cod generally are very adaptive to their environment. Sometimes they live as pelagic in big numbers, other times as lone fish along the shoreline. The fish are not more concentrated in the cages at the farm than you can find naturally in nature. Judging by mortality and growth pattern, our fish seems to be healthy and happy.

4. How long a history of cod farming is there in Norway?

Modern cod farming from egg to mouth is about 10 years old, but the Norwegians have kept wild caught cod temporarily in cages for many decades.

5. Do you have a quota per sq metre of fish?

One "concession"/quota is for 780 tons of biomass. You can have several quotas in one location depending on the approved properties of this location. Finally one company can have several locations. There is no direct link between the quantity of fish and the sizes of cages as long as the density is less than 15kg/m3. Our density is far less.

6. Are there any potential outside environmental impacts similar to the concerns over salmon and lice/antibiotics etc.?

With the experience and knowledge from salmon, a well functioning network of laboratories, veterinaries and farmers and the limited volumes farmed so far there have been little or no problems except for vibriosis. Therefore juvenile cod is vaccinated against this today.

From Frozen Food to Famous Chefs & Farmed Cod – the Story of Findus Ltd.

Findus has its origins in the Nordic region. In 1941, Marabou, a Swedish confectionery company acquired a small factory in the Northwest of Scania (Sweden) - with a brand called Findus.

In 1962, Marabou sold the Findus business to Nestlé, and it remained under Nestlé ownership until January 2000, when it was sold to EQT Scandinavia BV.

With a turnover of approximately EUR 800 million Findus has a presence in Norway, Sweden, Finland, UK, France, Spain, Germany, Denmark, Czech Republic, Slovakia, Hungary, Thailand and Australia, employing around 3,000 people.

In April 2005 ownership of Findus Ltd. was transferred from EQT, to the private ownership of Geir Frantzen, previously a senior manager at Swedish parent company Findus AB.

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