Norwegian farmed salmon has been so heavily marketed in Russia, that Russians are no longer buying their own wild fish, claims the chairman of the Russian Fishing Council, Aleksandr Saveljev. Russia is now one of the world’s biggest importers of Norwegian seafood.
“What is the difference between a squirrel and a rat?” asks Saveljev in a provocative article for Russian website Prodmagazin.ru, where he lashes out at the popularity of Norwegian fish in Russia. He goes on to answer: “Rats are not as good at PR. Now you can think about the difference between wild Russian fish and artificial Norwegian fish.”
Saveljev points to how the 2012 marketing budget for Norwegian fish in Russia was NOK 25.2 million (USD 4.5 million, EUR 3.4 million), an increase from the 2011 budget of NOK 23.75 million (USD 4.3 million, EUR 3.2 million). He claims the heavy marketing has skewed peoples’ tastes and perspectives.