I reviewed your recent routine trans fatty acids (TFA) analysis reports from the three commercial analytical labs: (1) Midwest Laboratories, (2) Eurofins Nutritional Analysis Center, and (3) Merieux Silliker Laboratory. The lab report analysis focused on fatty acid levels of your company’s cod liver oil samples and cod liver oil samples from five other different companies that sell cod liver oil. Midwest Lab analyzed eight cod liver oil samples from your company and six cod liver oil samples from other companies. Your company’s oil samples had a TFA average of 1.21%+0.51 (ranged from 0.54 to 2.01), the other commercial cod oil's TFA ranged from 0.26% to 2.13%. The report from the Eurofins Nutritional Analysis Center indicated that your company’s oil contained 0.81%+0.23. Merieux Silliker Laboratory report showed that your company’s oil had 0.60%+0.10 (ranged from 0.50 to 0.75) TFA and that the other companies’ oils had a TFA range from 0.65 and 0.90%.
There are a number of foods that contain low levels of trans fatty acids. For example, low levels of trans fatty acid may naturally present in bovine milk fat (0.6 - 3.9%) (Mansson, 2008), beef meat (3.6%) (Woods & Fearon, 2009), and dairy creams (3.02 to 4.11g/100 g) (Jan et al., 2011). This may be the result of microbial hydrogenation of cis-unsaturated fatty acids in the stomach of ruminant animals (Bauman & Griinari, 2003). The occurrence of TFA may also be a result of processing. Ackman and Mag (1998) and Ceriani and Meirelles (2007) have reported that small amounts of TFA found in refined edible oils could be due to the high temperatures used during the refining procedures. In general, a significant quantity of TFA is in industrially produced (high temperature processes) partially hydrogenated vegetable oils (Filip, Fink, Hribar, & Vidrih, 2010). Deodorization of oils or fats during refining or cooking can also produce TFA (Kodali, 2005). Please note that your oil extraction does not employ high temperatures; therefore, the small amount of TFA found in your company’s cod liver oil is not a result of your processing.
In general, the fish oil industry uses only mild heat or cold pressing to extract oil. Relatively high temperatures produce TFA from the oil. For example, Wolff (1994) has reported that oil generates TFA when oils are heated above 180oC. The origination of TFA can be identified using TFA isomers. Vaccenic acid (t11-C18:1) is expected to predominant in ruminant TFA (Scientific Advisory Committee on Nutrition, 2007). In my opinion, TFA in the cod oils analyzed by the three labs is not a result of thermal processing regardless of the company of origin.
In recent years, due to consumer awareness, consumers prefer food with no TFA. This would be achievable only with ideal process conditions (for example, low temperature) and raw materials, which do not contain TFA. Please note that all processed food may contain small amounts of TFA. For example, Roe et al (2013) have analyzed several foods for TFA and reported significant amounts of TFA in cod (fried in batter), potato chips, dairy ice cream, garlic and herb baguettes, spreadable butter and pizza. According to the Department of Health in the United Kingdom, TFA consumption should not exceed 5 g /day (United Kingdom, 1994). Your oil contained relatively a low level of TFA (an average of 1.21%). At this level, it would require about 413 g of cod liver oil to reach the 5 g TFA limit. In general, about two full cups of fish oil per day exceeds normal consumption levels.
There are low amounts of TFA naturally present in fish. For example, thawed mackerel (frozen) contained a total of 1.1% TFA (0.5% c16:1t and 0.6% c18:1t) according to published data by Stolyhwo et al (2004). Sirot et al (2008) have published an article that shows there are several fresh and/or frozen fish muscles including cod, pollock, and salmon that contain low levels of TFA. In my opinion, the small amount of TFA in your company’s and other companies’ cod liver oils may come from cod fish.
Subramaniam Sathivel, Ph.D.
Dr. Sathivel is the Professor of Food Engineer at the School Nutrition and Food Sciences and the Department of Biological and Agricultural Engineering, Louisiana State University Agricultural Center (LSUAC). Before joined LSUAC, Dr. Sathivel worked five years as an Assistant Professor of Seafood Processing and Engineering at the Fishery Industry Technology Center (FITC), University of Alaska Fairbanks, Alaska. He is responsible for the food process engineering laboratory at the LSUAC, where his projects include design and development of an adsorption technology to purify fish oils and fish protein, value added products, edible films and edible coatings. Dr. Sathivel has published 60 refereed articles, two popular articles, five book chapters, and six proceedings. Dr. Sathivel has an equally respectable record of published abstracts and professional presentations, many of which were invited talks at international scientific meetings and conferences.
Ackman, R. G. and Mag, T. K. (1998). Trans fatty acids and the potential for less in technical products. In J. L. Sebedio, & W. W. Christie (Eds.), Trans fatty acids in human nutrition (pp. 35e58). Dundee: The Oily Press.
Bauman, D. E., & Griinari, J. M. (2003). Nutritional regulation of milk fat synthesis. Annual Review of Nutrition, 23, 203e227.
Department of Health. (1994). Nutritionbal aspects of cardiovascular disease. Report of the cardiovascular review group of the committee on medical aspects of food policy. In Report on health and social subjects. Vol. 46. London: HMSO.
Jan, M., Filip, S., Polak, T., Hribar, J., & Vidrih, R. (2011). Quantitative comparison of the fatty acid composition of dairy and artificial creams and their nutritional value in the human diet. Milkwissenchaft, 66(2), 186e189.
Månsson, H. L. (2008). Fatty acids in bovine milk fat. Food Nutrition Research, 52(6), 1e3.Kodali, D. R. (2005). Trans fats e chemistry, occurrence, functional need in foods and potential solutions. In D. R. Kodali, & G. R. List (Eds.), Trans fats alternatives (pp.1e25). Champaign, IL, USA: AOCS Press. Roe, M., Pinchen, H., Church, S., Elahi, S., Walker, M., Farron-Wilson, M., Buttriss , J., and Finglas, P. (2013). Trans fatty acids in a range of UK processed foods. Food Chemistry, 140, 427–431.
Sirot, V., Oseredczuk, M., Bemrah-Aouachria, N., Volatier, J., and Leblanc, J. (2008). Lipid and fatty acid composition of fish and seafood consumed in France: CALIPSO study. Journal of Food Composition and Analysis, 21, 8–16.
Stolyhwo, A., Kolodziejska, I. and Sikorski, E.Z. (2006). Long chain polyunsaturated fatty acids in smoked Atlantic mackerel and Baltic sprats. Food Chemistry, 94, 589–595.
Wolff, R. L. (1994). Cis-trans isomerization of octadecatrienoic acids during heating. Study of pinolenic (cis-5, cis-9, cis-12 18:3) acid geometrical isomers in heated pine seed oil. Journal of the American Oil Chemists’ Society, 71, 1129–1134.
Woods, V. B., & Fearon, A. M. (2009). Dietary sources of unsaturated fatty acids for animals and their transfer into meat, milk and eggs: a review. Livestock Science, 126(1).
A few times per year, I like to share something from our family or to explore topics beyond cod liver oil and our other produts.
I received two hockey jerseys (a USA National jersey, and a Minnesota North Stars jersey) in the mail from my father along with a copy of the newspaper article below. The jerseys will lbe framed and put in the man cave where my boys and I (and my wife occasionally) watch the Minnesota Wild games. Over the years I have talked about hockey with many customers especially with some of our Canadian customers. One person even recalled my father from his playing days.
Enjoy the news clipping, which you may view here in a larger version. Oh, and my father's nice smile is a real hockey players smile (false teeth).
What follows is the scientific analysis conducted by Dr. Jacob Friest, PhD Organic Chemistry, Chair of the Nebraska Section of the American Chemical Society. He had access to any test results he wanted. We tested anything he wanted and provided samples from our vats for further independent evaluation. Below is just a sample of the many tests he reviewed:
Fermented Cod Liver Oil (FCLO): Investigation of Green Pastures Fermentation Process and Food Safety Implications.
Author: Jacob A. Friest, PhD Organic Chemistry, 2015 Chair of the Nebraska Section of the American Chemical Society.
Release Date: 27 October 2015
A recent article published by Dr. Kaayla T. Daniel, “Hook, Line and Stinker! The Truth About Fermented Cod Liver Oil” has recently raised concerns regarding the safety of fermented cod liver oil (FCLO) products manufactured by Green Pastures. David Wetzel, owner of Green Pastures, requested that I conduct a review of Dr. Daniel’s assertions to determine their validity and to further evaluate Green Pastures product testing to ensure that their product is safe.
The key assertion of Dr. Daniel, that fermented cod liver oil (FCLO) as manufactured by Green Pastures cannot be from the fermentation of cod liver oil (CLO) or fats, is confirmed. Fermentation experts would all agree with Dr. Daniel that oils/fats cannot be fermented. However, Green Pastures does not claim, neither do they advertise, that their product is produced by the fermentation of CLO but by that of the carbohydrates found in the whole cod livers themselves. As Dr. Daniel pointed out in her article, cod livers contain between 1 and 2 grams of carbohydrates for every 100 grams of liver. Typical fermentation processes only require 0.62 grams of carbohydrate per kilogram to lower the pH by 0.1 pH units1. Based on the 1 to 2 grams of carbohydrate/100 grams of liver, this would give rise to a total drop in pH between 1.6 to 3.2 pH units. If we assume that the process of fermenting a cod liver begins at neutral pH of approximately 7.0, the natural levels of carbohydrate found in cod livers would be sufficient to lower the pH of the final fermented product batch to between 3.8 and 5.4. This brings us to the question of what is an acceptable pH range to achieve a safe-for-human consumption product. Dr. Daniel asserts that the pH needed to prevent food spoilage for true lacto-fermented product is less than 4.6. However, as published by the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO)), raw fermented sausages are only moderately acidic with a pH range of 5.0-5.5 and are safe for human consumption2.
In her article, Dr. Daniel indicates that the pH of the bottled FLCO product is between 5.17 and 6.0. After questioning David Wetzel about Green Pastures fermentation process these numbers are as expected and in no way disprove that effective levels of fermentation were achieved to ensure product safety. To make sense of this I will first describe Green Pastures fermentation process: (1) the frozen cod livers are added to the fermentation vats along with Green Pastures starter culture and salt. The vats are then sealed and allowed to ferment. This process produces three distinct layers within the fermentation vats. At the bottom of the vat is the solid liver material and sediment. On top of this is a water layer which is formed as water is released from the cod livers during fermentation. On top of the water, an oil layer is formed. (2) After the fermentation is complete, this top layer containing the coveted oil is pulled from the fermentation vat and centrifuged to remove all sediment and liver material as well as separate out any water that was pulled from the vats with the desired oil. It is important to understand the layers formed during the fermentation process and how the oil is separated/purified by centrifugation to understand why the FCLO pH falls outside the normal pH range for fermented animal meat products. This is because the major acid by-product of a lacto fermentative process is lactic acid. Lactic acid is a highly water soluble acid and is extracted from the resulting oil during the pulling and centrifugation of the oil. To be certain of this, Green Pastures has measured the pH of the resulting water layer (brine) at the end of the fermentation process and found it to be between 4.8 and 5.04 (see attached testing from Midwest Laboratories). These pH values fall well within the normal pH levels accepted for the fermentation of raw meat products as described by the FAO.
Determination of FCLO Rancidity
There are two pathways by which fatty esters or triglycerides become rancid. Hydrolytic rancidity, which occurs when the fatty esters are hydrolyzed to free fatty acids, and oxidative rancidity leading to the formation of hydroperoxides and aldehyde by-products. According to Dr. Daniel’s article, fatty acid levels based on acid value are the most reliable markers to determine the hydrolytic rancidity in FCLO. However, acid value is determined by an acid/base titration with potassium hydroxide or sodium hydroxide and is not selective for fatty acids. Acid value is a measure of total acids in a sample. Since acids are a desired by-product of lacto fermentation it is not surprising that the acid values for FCLO are high since it would undoubtedly be expected to contain other free acids, not related to fatty acids, but rather by-products of carbohydrate fermentation. Therefore, acid value determination is not a good measure of hydrolytic rancidity for fermented cod liver oil since it is not selective for measuring only free fatty acids.
Dr. Daniel also states that fatty acids, the product of hydrolytic rancidity, are toxic to cell membranes. Unfortunately, this is a tactic to add scare value to her argument, and in the case of potential fatty acids being present in FCLO, is completely untrue. What Dr. Daniel has failed to state is how fatty esters or triglycerides are metabolized by the body3. When fatty esters and triglycerides enter the intestinal tract they cannot be absorbed by the duodenum. Instead, pancreatic lipase and bile hydrolyze the ester bond and release the fatty acids which are then absorbed by the duodenum. In this regard, if there were any free fatty acids present in FCLO, they would truly be in a “pre-digested form” and more readily taken up by the absorptive enterocyte cells lining the intestines where they are reassembled into triglycerides and packaged together with cholesterol and proteins to form chlyomicrons. The resulting chlyomicrons are excreted from the cells and collected by the lymph system and mixed into the blood. Various tissues can then recapture the chlyomicrons and release the re-built triglycerides to be used as a source of energy. In short, our bodies would take the ester or triglyceride form of cod liver oil and hydrolyze it to the free fatty acid form so our bodies can adsorb it. Free fatty acids in FCLO would not require this digestive step and would be readily adsorbed by the intestinal enterocytes directly and reassembled into triglycerides for transport.
Oxidative rancidity in fatty oils occurs as oxygen reacts with the oils to form hydroperoxides. Secondary to this is the decomposition of the hydroperoxides over time, to aldehydes and other carbonyl compounds. The key indicators for oxidative oil rancidity are to measure the oils peroxide value, p-anisidine value, or a TBA/TBARS levels. As Dr. Daniel explains in her article, peroxide value and the TBARS test are poor indicators of rancidity for FCLO due to the breakdown of the peroxides to aldehydes, and in the case of the TBARS test, interfering compounds in the product matrix. However, since a primary concern of rancidity is the formation of hydroperoxides and other reactive oxygen species, I would contend that peroxide value is indeed a valuable snapshot of the product in its current state, showing that reactive oxygen species are at safe levels for human consumption. In this regard, the peroxide values for several FCLO lots tested at levels between 2.9-6.7 meq/Kg, well below the levels established by the FAO, indicating that FLCO is not rancid.
The TBA or TBARS tests are also measures of aldehydes present in oils and are very commonly used to determine oxidative rancidity of older oils. Specifically, these methods are concerned with the detection of malondialdehyde formed during oxidative degradation of oils, which is reactive and potentially mutagenic and has been found in edible oils that have been heated. It is interesting that 2 out of the 3 labs that tested FCLO for Dr. Daniel reported safe levels for the TBA and TBARS values yet she is quick to disregard this testing as not being a valuable indicator of whether FCLO is safe since the formed aldehydes must have reacted with the proteins/DNA in the cod liver itself. Since the key question is whether FCLO is safe, it is a very important test! The process by which Green Pastures separates FCLO from the fermentation mixture likely removes all protein from the oil. First, the proteins/DNA would be more water soluble and therefore remain in the water layer from the fermentation process and secondly, if any solid liver material was removed with FCLO during the “pulling” of the oil it would be completely removed during centrifugation. Therefore, if any oxidative rancidity of the pure FCLO were to occur, the aldehydes, especially malondialdehyde, would not be able to react with any proteins/DNA since it has been removed from the oil. Therefore, these tests are in fact demonstrating again that FCLO is not rancid.
The third testing method discussed by Dr. Daniel for determining oxidative rancidity is p-Anisidine Value (AV). This is a test which measures aldehyde levels that arise as secondary oxidation products formed during the decomposition of hydroperoxides. The determination of aldehyde levels is a valuable indicator in determining oxidative rancidity in older oils. Not surprisingly, all testing results by Dr. Daniel are well below FAO guidelines, yet she concludes that the testing is not valid since many of these aldehyde by-products are volatile and escape to the environment before testing can be carried out. However, whether Dr. Daniel’s testing was performed on freshly pulled FCLO right out of fermentation or on the finished product, the testing PV should provide an accurate picture of late-stage oxidative rancidity. Why is this? Because the fermentation process occurs in a sealed vat, meaning that any aldehydes formed during fermentation cannot be lost, and since the finished product is purified by centrifugation and not distillation it would not be expected that these aldehydes would be lost at this point in the process as well. In fact, unless the labs who performed the testing of FCLO left the FCLO sample bottles uncapped and exposed to the air for extended periods of time, it is unlikely that this is a logical argument as to why FCLO tested within safe limits for all three testing methods (PV, TBA, and AV). What seems more likely is that Dr. Daniel is coming to these conclusions based on the acid value testing, even when all other results are to the contrary, and rather than consider why the acid value testing might be flawed, she simply discredits all other testing to support a hypothesis. Dr. Daniel’s conclusion about her own testing suggests that she began her investigation into FCLO already convinced that FCLO was rancid and this left her blinded to results that have clearly demonstrated otherwise.
Finally, let’s consider whether either of these forms of rancidity would even be expected to occur. As far as hydrolytic rancidity is concerned the conditions that would favor this process would be either very acidic or highly basic conditions. The fatty esters would be expected to be very stable in the pH range for which FCLO is produced. Additionally, since water is required for the hydrolysis of the fatty esters during hydrolytic rancidity, once the FCLO is pulled and centrifuged in the Green Pasture process, most of the water is removed thereby reducing the likelihood of hydrolytic rancidity. Lastly, oxidative rancidity is also greatly minimized in the Green Pastures fermentation process since it is carried out in the absence of oxygen which is required for hydroperoxide formation to cause oxidative rancidity.
Levels of Biogenic Amines Found in FCLO
Biogenic amines (BA) are organic, basic, nitrogenous compounds of low molecular weight that are formed by the decarboxylation of amino acids and occur due to biological activity. BAs occur naturally in animals and humans and are important as neurotransmitters, blood pressure regulation, and cellular growth regulators. However, BAs can become hazardous if their levels reach a critical threshold. The most important BAs found in food products are histamine, tyramine, putrescine, cadaverine, and phenylethylamine. Biogenic amines, especially histamine, are associated with the pathogenesis of food poisoning and Scombroid fish poisoning (SFP)4. SFP occurs in healthy individuals when a dose of 50 mg of Histamine is consumed from a single serving of a fish product (250g serving size).4 This correlates to fish with histamine levels exceeding 200 mg/Kg. For fish to contain such levels of histamine, which would cause SFP, the following conditions must be met4:
the fish are of a species that contain sufficient free histidine to be converted to histamine,
the presence of histamine producing bacteria,
conditions that support the growth of histamine producing bacteria and their production of the enzyme histidine decarboxylase enzymes.
In the case of FCLO, cod is not a species of fish that is associated with having high or sufficient levels of histidine to lead to histamine levels of 200 mg/Kg4. The conditions for fermentation do support the growth of histamine-producing bacteria, however, this is easily controlled by the use of starter cultures that do not contain amino acid decarboxylase enzymes. Moreover, the risk of SFP is greatly mitigated even before Green Pastures receives the frozen livers by the implementation of a HACCP plan. An HACCP (hazard analysis critical control point) is a management system in which food safety is addressed through the analysis and control of biological, chemical, and physical hazards from raw material production, procurement and handling, to manufacturing, distribution and consumption of the finished product. Controls for histamine, as well as other biogenic amines, in susceptible fish have been identified5. The risk mitigation strategies, which have been adopted by the FAO/WHO, detailed in the above reference include the following:
post-harvest chilling of fish,
gutting and gilling of susceptible fish,
freezing and refrigerated storage,
use of decarboxylase free starter cultures for fermented fish products.
Green Pastures has assured me that an HACCP plan is in place for the harvest and handling of their cod livers from the harvesting of the fish all the way through the fermentation process.
In addition to utilizing a HACCP plan by Green Pastures, the most important question to ask is whether FCLO is expected to be at risk for containing high levels of biogenic amines. The answer is no. This is due to the way in which Green Pastures produces FCLO. Since biogenic amines are highly water soluble and not fat soluble, any biogenic amines formed during fermentation, would be extracted to the aqueous layer of the fermentation vat. After removal of the water and sediment layers from the FCLO by centrifugation, biogenic amine formation is completely eliminated in the finished product since none of the required precursor amino acids would be present.
Analysis of FCLO Samples by Midwest Laboratories and Eurofins Nutritional Analysis Center
In response to the article published by Dr. Daniel, Green Pastures sent FCLO samples to Midwest Laboratories and Eurofins Nutritional Analysis Center to determine the rancidity profile of FCLO based on FAO guidelines and testing recommendations. I would like to make special note of the quality and authenticity of the reports provided for this investigation by Green Pastures. The reports were provided as prepared by the testing labs and include sample lots, testing dates, and by whom the testing was performed. It is unethical to publish redacted test results or to omit these key identifiers. By reporting her findings in this way, Dr. Daniel has made it impossible for any other labs to corroborate or discredit her testing and by doing so invited the authenticity of the data to be called into question. All lab tests results from Midwest Laboratories and Eurofins Nutritional Analysis Center clearly demonstrate that FCLO is not rancid with the exception of acid value which is higher than recommended by the FAO. This can easily be explained by the nonselective nature of this test and the fact that all fermented products are expected to contain elevated levels of acids, not necessarily free fatty acids, but likely acid by-products of carbohydrate fermentation (see attached reports).
Testing of FCLO produced by Green Pastures clearly demonstrates that FCLO is safe for human consumption and displays no signs of product rancidity or significant levels of biogenic amines. Moreover, after reviewing Dr. Daniel’s arguments regarding the safety of Green Pasture FCLO, it is clear that her analysis of the issue is flawed and her conclusions are incorrect and have misled the public. Whether this was intentional or unintentional is yet to be seen. Furthermore, the authenticity of her data is questionable since the key identifiers that would allow independent testing by other labs have been withheld. It is recommended the Dr. Daniel provide full transparency in her testing and data, and review the nature of FCLO and the Green Pastures fermentation process. On the other hand, Green Pastures has provided more than adequate testing to prove that FCLO is in fact not rancid, as well as to support their claims regarding the levels of fat soluble vitamins in FCLO.
1. Fermented Meat Products: Production and Consumption. Herbert W. Ockerman and Lopa Basu, Ohio State University, Columbus, OH
2. Meat Processing Technology, Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, 2007.
3. Fats and Oils in Human Consumption: Report of a Joint Expert Consultation. FAO 1994.
Peter, London, November 17, 2015 at 2:48 AM
What about the allegations that there are trans fats in the product?
Next paper written by another scientist. There are transfats in fish. It appears to come from digestion process. We measured ours and compared to many other brands. It is in all cod liver oils in the same/similar very low levels. They are natural. We do see variations between labs but in general similar levels within the same lab measuring. Don't know why the bloggers did not fully study b4 making sensational claims. There are many papers on the subject.
Joseph Underwood, Gulf Breeze Florida, November 2, 2015 at 5:24 PM
Thanks, always nice to know that it is a quality product. Good information.
Alan, Fremont, California, October 29, 2015 at 6:24 PM
Pretty nicely written report; I could follow this well enough without digging into basic references too much. On item not covered from the list of critiques is the taste of the product. I have personally experienced the burning sensation now and then and also the fish taste but I thought that just came with the territory. It would seem Dr. Daniel was looking for rancidity to explain that under the theory that anything good for you must taste good. On the other hand I recall (without being able to point to at the moment) stories from more than a hundred years ago about kids hating to take CLO but were required to do so by their parents. With that perspective it is hard to adopt Dr. Daniels presumed bias.
Another topic not covered (although it has in prior postings) is whether or not Alaskan Pollock is actually "cod." It sort of sounds to me like an argument as to whether a Calico is actually a Tabby or not but I would like to see more on this.
Alaska Pollock is not pollock. It has never been Pollock other than confusion on its common name associated with other fish with the genus name pollock. But both Alaska Pollock (along with other fish in the genus Gadus Cod) and the different fish that fall under the Genus Pollock are both in the same family of fish Gadidae.
Alaska Pollock vs Pacific Cod; when it comes to oil you are correct. They are both Gadidae family of fish, and they are both Genus Gadus. They are in the same waters, eating the same feed. Combine this with they are both in the same fish family and even in the same genus. They provide nutrient rich oils with similar healthful fatty acid complex. The liver oils are very similar as expected.
Codex Defines Cod liver oil as oil from the livers of fish from the Gadidae family of fish with a specified fatty acid complex range. Both Fish fit this definition and are not only within the same family of fish but the same genus.
The Alaska Pollock is most closely related to the Atlantic cod (also Genus Gadas) and the Pacific Cod is most closely related to the Greenland Cod (also Genus Gadus). There are many other Gadidae fish used to make different cod oils . Each ocean of the world has different fish that are in the Gadidae family. I looked up this family and counted 58 fish in this family, maybe there are more? I did not do a complete search.
If you are discussing meat, there are differences in taste/texture experience qualities between Alaska Pollock and Pacific Cod.
Side note: The common names of fish confuse the discussion. Example; the common Lingcod is not in the family Gadidae but rather the family Hexagrammidae. Obviously the common name uses the term cod which confuses the fish family discussion for some.
Another example, there are other Pollock in the family Gadidae (Genus Pollachius ..i think two fish in this genus). Even though the common names of these different fish have the word Pollock they are not in the same Genus as Alaska Pollock (genus Gadus vs genus Pollachius) but both of these genus fall in fish family Gadidae.
Yet another example on how naming confuses the discussion there are many common names used for the same fish. The Alaska Pollock is also referred as; Walleye Pollock, Pacific Tomcod, Bigeye Cod, Snow Cod, Tom-Cod and Pacific Pollock.
We are currently using Pacific Cod but we do not know what the future holds. We only have two fish options in the area we have partners suppling quality livers. There are changes to fish populations, quality and availability from year to year so one needs to make sure they are in position to react to make sure there is always a good supply of quality cod liver oil to meet the communities needs.
Keri Hessel, , October 27, 2015 at 11:35 PM
Thank you for this excellent scientific review! I will share this with friends and family.
Charlie Janicki , Hamilton , October 27, 2015 at 10:25 PM
Can you please organize this article in one concise pdf format so that it could be easily sent or printed? I would like to send that to my family physician, et al.
Congratulations to DJ and Barbara Nekolite who welcomed their daughter Brihanna Lynn on October 23, 2015 weighing in at 7 pounds and 20 ounces. Barbara is our Sales Manager and we are delighted to announce this blessing!
Sometime soon we will publish an article describing the deep historical roots of fish liver oil and what we do, but meanwhile I wanted to put out a short teaser based on a couple of calls I received in the past week. There was an assertion made that fish liver oils used medicinally were first invented or discussed in Norway and only as recently as the 1700’s. That is not what my research reveals.
The illustration above is referenced in the Book of Tobias, scripture that is part of the Catholic and Orthodox biblical canon. It shows the Arch Angel Rafael telling Tobias to save the heart, liver and gall from the fish being that they may be used for healing purposes.
Below is a reference from Apicius, Cookery and Dining in Imperial Rome which discusses the fact that the finest, medicinal and most expensive garum was the oil from fermented fish livers. The process to make this product in ancient Rome is very similar to how we make our Fermented Cod Liver Oil. We apply the same principles. I find it interesting that the author discusses exposing cod liver oil to the sun similarly to the ancient practice of fermenting fish livers in Rome.
"The finest garum was made of the livers of the fish only, exposed to the sun, fermented, somehow preserved. It was an expensive article in old Rome, famed for its medicinal properties. Its mode of manufacture has given rise to much criticism and scorn ancients in placing any value on the “essence from putrified intestines of fish.” However, garum has been vindicated, confirmed, endorsed, reiterated, rediscovered, if you please, by modern science! What, pray, is the difference in principle between garum (the exact nature of which is unknown) and the oil of the liver of cod (or less expensive fish) exposed to the beneficial rays of ultraviolet light—artificial sunlight—to imbue the oil with an extra large and uniform dose of vitamin D? The ancients, it appears, knew “vitamin D” to exist. Maybe they had a different name for “vitamins,” maybe none at all. They knew the nutritive value of liver, proven by many formulæ. Pollio, one of the vicious characters of antiquity, fed murenas (sea-eel) with slaves he threw into the piscina, the fish pond, and later enjoyed the liver of the fish.” – Apicius, Cookery and Dining in Imperial RomeEdited and Translated by Joseph Dommers Vehling, p. 22.
Our process is not new, but rather a very old practice that has been used to prepare and preserve food/medicine since the first written word. Using fish livers for medicine has deep historical significance in human medicinal history.
Binge, Orange County, California, October 14, 2015 at 12:52 PM
Cod liver oil has been continuously consumed by 3 generations of my family as far back as can I recall. In the society from which I hail, its consumption was believed to be essential for good health, intelligence and well-being, and especially so during hard economic times, when subsistence meals were the norm. The recent hoo-hah about the method by which the oil is RELEASED from the liver cells (fermentation v. the others) is simply a smear campaign by the uneducated/uninformed/ignorant, with an ax to grind (and probably the paid mouthpiece of Norwegian interests).
GPP has become an American institution on the strength of its pioneering work in resurrecting a long-dormant process. Hooray for good old American ingenuity!
Contrenia Lovely, Miami, Florida, October 14, 2015 at 8:36 AM
Thank you so much for the accurate biblical reference to the benefit of cod liver oil. It's so refreshing to see and to know that I'm getting a pure, quality product and not something that has so many artificial additives. This is something I have no fear of putting in my body. Thank you and many blessings to you and your company.
Jim boles, Remington,indiana, October 14, 2015 at 8:24 AM
Enjoy your postings,I always pass to those who have ears to hear! My so inlay,daughter,son,all swear they can't do without! Grandkids line up for their "medicine" every morn!....jim
Kari P, Colorado, October 14, 2015 at 7:30 AM
David, I love your postings and your company. I think we need people like yourself in our country who have a desire to show people the value of truly healing foods and products like your CLO. I love your products! Please don't ever stop producing it or sell to some big company! I am a Massage Therapist/Acupuncturist and have been practicing for almost 30 years. I keep learning more about health and healing all the time. So much of it is never taught to us in our families, our schools, or our society. So much of it is just lost over the generations of time and we then forget how to heal ourselves. Healing ourselves should not have to be super difficult or expensive. Thank you SO much for what you do! Kari P, Lac, LMT
Carol Burtch, Morral,Ohio USA, October 14, 2015 at 7:09 AM
Thank you for a great article. In this day and age of fictitious and incomplete information, it is nice to read accurate and truthful information.
Victor Cozzetto, N.Y., October 14, 2015 at 3:48 AM
It is very generous of you to share such information. I imagine that Dr. Weston A. Price would have been thrilled to see a modern food provider paying tribute to such ancient food methods. A shame that so much has been lost to us over time. And a blessing to have people like you reviving such practices.
Many of us have come to rely too heavily on the Internet for information; which often fails to unearth many gems such as this. So much knowledge still lies buried in books, oral histories, and elsewhere. Thank you for attempting to unearth, understand, and share such knowledge. And thank you for continuing to develop and apply it in your products.