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Rainbow trout imports from Norway at record levels

A record amount of 1.9 million kilograms of Norwegian rainbow trout has been consumed in Finland in January to August this year, three times more than during the same time period last year.

A record amount of 1.9 million kilograms of Norwegian rainbow trout has been consumed in Finland in January to August this year, three times more than during the same time period last year.

Following the trend of increasing salmon imports from Norway, the flow of rainbow trout into Finland is now over thirty times larger than in 1999. Imports in 1999 totalled only 61 tons, but during the first eight months of 2002, 1,900 tons of rainbow trout arrived in Finland.

The majority of the Norwegian rainbow trout winds up in industrial kitchens and restaurants. In grocery stores, domestic rainbow trout is most often sold whole, and the Norwegian fish as a fillet.

The import price from Norway was below the domestic cost of production last year, prompting the Finnish Fish Farmers' Association to complain to the EU of possible dumping, or exporting at a price below the cost of production.

Domestic production of rainbow trout has declined somewhat from the best years, or from an annual production of 20 million kilograms to 15 million.

Both Finnish and Norwegian rainbow trout have been found to be of excellent quality. The fish sold to consumers is just as fresh, and the fish farming process produces the same amount of emissions in both countries.

 Rainbow trout is the most popular choice for Finns when they choose to eat fish. The consumption per capita totalled 1.6 kilograms of the fish as fillet last year. In a survey conducted last summer by the Finnish Fish Farmers' Association, 86 percent of the respondents said they prefer domestic rainbow trout.