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Sustainable Fish Oil:The Nordic Naturals Difference
Submitted by Nordic Naturals

The United Nations estimates that 75% of the planet's fish stocks are fished to their maximum limits or already exhausted. Overfishing is more than just an environmental issue; it is a global health issue that needs immediate attention. We need strong fisheries management and serious local, federal, and global policy change to protect the health of marine ecosystems. The other essential factor is consumer awareness. We need informed consumers who can harness their purchasing power to promote sustainable stewardship of our oceans. Any environmentally-responsible fish oil manufacturer will offer transparency into their fishing practices, will only harvest fish species that are not endangered and only from waters that are not overfished, and will ensure that 100% of all fish harvested are utilized for human or animal consumption.

Whereas fishing is entirely unregulated in much of the world, Norway is doing an excellent job of protecting their waters from overfishing. The Norwegian fisheries management system is the most comprehensive and stringent system in existence today, and has been a model for the sustainable harvest of marine life for nearly 50 years. Norwegian-born Nordic Naturals founder and CEO Joar Opheim has built long-term relationships with fishermen to guarantee that, since our founding in 1995, all fish sourced by Nordic Naturals are sourced in compliance with this stringent system. Nordic Naturals is also aligned with leading marine researchers at the University of Tromso in Arctic, Norway to receive regularly-updated information about fish stock estimates and the health of marine ecosystems. Nordic Naturals harvests three fish species, none of which are endangered: Norwegian Arctic cod (NOT Atlantic cod or rock cod), sardines, and anchovies. Our Arctic cod are harvested from the Norwegian Sea outside of Lofoten, Norway, and our anchovies and sardines are harvested from the Southern Pacific Ocean.

Nordic Naturals never uses krill or salmon out of concerns raised by experts about the sustainability of these species. We choose Arctic cod because, whereas cod stocks in the Northwest, North Sea, and Baltic Sea are depleted or collapsed, Arctic cod stock in Norwegian waters is above safe biological limits and is currently increasing according to the Institute for Marine Research. We choose anchovies and sardines because they are well-managed, abundant populations that are ideal for long-term sustainability given their short reproductive cycles, and are naturally low in environmental toxins such as mercury. The Environmental Defense Fund rates anchovies and sardines as eco-best fish choices.

Nordic Naturals fish oil is certified by Friend of the Sea, which only certifies products from fisheries harvesting stocks that are not overexploited. Friend of the Sea criteria require fishing methods that comply with regulations for net mesh size and minimum size of catch, do not bycatch threatened species, and do not impact the seabed. But Nordic Naturals' commitment to minimizing our environmental footprint doesn't stop in the oceans—it extends to all of our business practices worldwide. To learn more about our sustainable fishing practices, the Norwegian fisheries management system, and Nordic Naturals' other environmental and social initiatives, please visit planetnordic.com.



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