Positive developments on Russian market of caviar substitutes

April 26, 2007 16:09

The recent years have been displaying a rapid growth of Russian export of caviar substitutes.

According to Moscow-based major importers and distributors OOO "Norge-Fish" (ltd), the main growth of the exports volumes is observed in the group: «Prepared and canned fish: sturgeon caviar (black caviar) and caviar substitutes produced from eggs of other fishes». The average annual growth was 41% from 16000 tons in 2000 to 46000 tons in 2005.

Caviar substitutes

Those products are eaten just like caviar, but they are made of eggs of various fish species, except for sturgeons, for example from salmon, carp, pike, tuna, mullet, cod, lumpfish, etc. the eggs are cleansed from other biological materials, salted and sometimes pressed or dried. They can be spiced and coloured. Those products are included in the above mentioned category regardless they are packed into sealed containers or not.

Sturgeon caviar

Sturgeon caviar is made of eggs of sturgeons inhabiting rivers of several regions (Italy, Alaska, Turkey, Iran and Russia). Main sturgeon species are beluga, ship Acipenser nudiventris, sturgeon and sevruga. Female gonads are normally soft grainy mass of eggs of 2-4 mm diameter. The eggs colour vary from silver gray to green black and they have strong smell and lightly salted taste. Sturgeon caviar can be either pressed into homogenized paste in the form of small slim cylinders or packed into small jars/cans.

Imitation caviar

According to Europrom Company (Saint-Petersburg-based producers and exporters of imitation caviar), the Russian market of imitation caviar has also been booming just like export.

Europrom was established in 1997 and the firm has been quite a success in the trade. The company says that it has won strong position on the domestic food market thanks to its up-to-date resource base, trained personnel and the strategy of efficient marketing.

The company claims that it has the biggest share of Russia's caviar substitute market. In 2004 the plant was enlarged, fitted with modern equipment and HACCP was implemented.

Europrom Ltd. is registered in USA FDA and got an EU-approval number (08K), which allows exporting to EU countries.

As regards particular of the production range, Europrom has developed and launched a brand new product for the Russian market: Ikra Tsarskaya (Tzar Caviar) made of sturgeon and salmon meat, the item being promoted as a healthy product containing no animal fat, free of cholesterol and featuring a balanced content of fish oils.

Through 10 years of trading on the market the company has gained experience in the sphere of food production and sales, it has established business relationships with many trading companies of Saint Petersburg, Moscow and other regions.

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