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Norway Looking For Alternative Tuna Supply Sources

Vietnam gained ground in Norway’s shrinking canned tuna market last year, while the northern European country consistently rejected tuna products from Thailand over food safety concerns.
In 2012, Vietnam nearly doubled its canned tuna volume to Norway from the previous year, shipping a total of 26,054 cartons. Thai factories, the market’s leaders, meanwhile reduced their exports by 25% to 193,054 cartons.

Thai canned tuna products were rejected on 10 separate occasions by Norwegian border authorities last year, and the issued health alerts led the world’s largest tuna producer, Thai Union, to stop exports from its Thai Union Manufacturing plant. The products were being exposed to “post-process contamination,” according to an industry source, and the company confirmed the problems were related to its factory’s water-cooling system.
Like Vietnam, Spain increased its presence in Norway’s canned tuna market significantly last year, overtaking major suppliers such as Philippines, Germany and Italy. Spanish canners, who were strongly urging the European Commission to block Thai tuna from entering Europe’s market after the health alerts, boosted their tuna exports to Norway from 307 cartons in 2011 to 9,528 cartons in 2012.
Overall, Norway imported 16% less in canned tuna last year compared to 2011, for a total volume of 243,732 cartons. Vietnamese canned tuna was the cheapest at USD 42.00 per carton CFR.