At the pre-Christmas media reception at the Consul General’s residence, journalists gathered to have a taste of fresh Norwegian seafood. Terrence Crandall, current Executive Chef at Peninsula Hotel Shanghai, assisted in preparing the Norwegian seafood delicacies and explaining to the group how best to prepare seafood. The Consul General held a short presentation for the journalists where he revealed the secret of how to bring in live seafood – direct from the cold, clear oceans of Norway – to the dinner table in Shanghai.
Norwegian seafood exporters have been pondering over a method to bring fresh, live king crabs from Norway to Shanghai. Unfortunately frozen king crabs, scallops and mussels do not have the same succulent taste as fresh products. To find a solution to this problem, Norwegian seafood exporters put a couple of scientists on the job to find out how well crabs could travel on airplanes. The test-crabs were put on the plane to Shanghai with small microchips attached to their heart to measure the level of stress they experienced on their journey over to China. Just like human beings, it was discovered that king crabs experienced stress during take-off, landing and turbulence. This stress had a negative effect on the juicy and delicious king crab meat. To avoid the high stress-levels for the crab, the scientists found a solution. The live seafood is chilled down to 2 degrees, remaining barely alive and avoiding anxiety on their flight to China. Upon arrival, they are put back into seawater and slowly come back to life. This way, the seafood retains its fresh taste and quality.
Participants representing specialized media, such as food magazines, were all well informed about the quality of Norwegian seafood, however, the surprise in the group about the story behind the export of live seafood turned into vibrant conversations.