Aarskog: “This knowledge is in short supply in our industry”

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“The farming industry does not have enough knowledge about what is the right time for consumers to eat salmon. Is it for Christmas, for Easter, or is it for lunch? Hot smoked salmon in salad? And how often can one actually eat salmon?”

Mowi CEO Alf-Helge Aarskog visited the Norwegian University of Life Sciences (NMBU) on Wednesday during the first Sea Farm Days on Ås, near Oslo. About 50 students listened to Aarskog explaining why Mowi has chosen to change its name from Marine Harvest, and how they have changed their mindset to using marketing as an important part of further development of the company.

“Even I as a healthy man is influenced by advertising. Although I like not to believe it,” Aarskog said.

“We have worked a lot with marketing after rebranding, but there is one thing that is in short supply in our industry. Knowledge of what is the right time to eat salmon. And how often can you eat salmon? This is something we have not worked with especially, and if you ask others in the industry do they not, either,” he added.

Food safety
Earlier in the day, Cargill researcher Olav Fjeld Kragerud gave a lecture on fish feed. On the challenge of the hall on what is the big challenge in the feed production going forward, he replied that keeping the consistency in the content of the feed for a long time stable is a challenge.

Vebjørn Andreassen thanked Alf-Helge Aarskog after the lecture. PHOTO: Andreas Witzøe

Aarskog pointed out that food safety and the ability to track all parts of production are important for Mowi.

“We want control over the entire journey to the salmon. That is why we started with our own feed production,” said Aarskog.

The whole story
Vebjørn Andreassen was one of the students behind the event. He is very pleased that large players from the industry presented and told the students about everything from genetic engineering to feed production.

“The fact that the big players are here is crucial to us. It shows us a myriad of possibilities and how exciting this industry is,” said Andreassen.

And the response from the companies has been overwhelmingly positive, according to Andreassen. “Several have turned all the stones to get here. We are very pleased with that. We hope this will be an annual event,” he said.