The ancient Rosita method
1. Wild-caught, deep-sea fishing: We sustainably fish the wild codfish (Gadus morhua) from the pristine, sapphire blue waters of the Norwegian fjords. To ensure total control over sustainability, quality and freshness of cod livers, we employ our own small artisan fishing boats (rather than commercial fishing boats). Our boats put out sea bird-friendly long lines baited with fat slices of frozen mackerel or herrings. We catch the cod carefully to protect the population. Line-caught fish are a much better alternative to fish that have been caught by destructive trawling methods. And sustainable, fresh cod tastes so much more clean and sweet!
The liver oil from deep-sea cod was highly prized and sought after by the ancient Norse people, who considered it to be the most potent in terms of therapeutic properties. It was also known to have a smoother consistency. Our ancestors were masters of deep-sea fishing; grueling yet rewarding work.
Commercial CLO: Manufacturers of commercial cod liver oil do not specifically fish for deep-sea codfish. They will often purchase fish on the open market or from brokers, which can be problematic regarding the freshness, source, and even fish species. By using freshly-caught fish and not importing frozen products, we believe quality is optimally maintained and the properties of the raw materials will not deteriorate during long transport, freezing, etc.
2. Harvesting the livers on deck: Next, we haul the lively wild codfish into the boat and remove them from the hooks. Our fishermen then carefully sacrifice the fish, remove the livers, and wash them in pure cold water. The livers are then immediately placed under proprietary conditions to maintain freshness. We separate the meat and insides for other uses, and quickly ferry the livers to shore.
3. Inspecting the livers by hand: Upon returning to the docks, we carefully hand-inspect the fresh livers at Rosita’s zero-emission production premises. We go to great lengths to make sure the livers are carefully handled and never exposed to high temperatures, chemicals or reactive metals. This is because rough handling of the liver can cause it to bruise, promoting degradation and lowering the quality of the oil produced. Per ancient Viking tradition, we only use fresh, robust livers of a specific appearance and weight, as the quality of fish liver oil is highly dependent on the quality of the liver. That means crushed and bruised livers don’t apply. Further, if the cod livers are small and discolored (or have a dark appearance), this indicates a scarcity of food for the cod and the possibility they may not be healthy. The best codfish livers are large and beautifully plump, soft to the touch with an almost cream-colored appearance, which indicates the codfish are thriving and well-fed. Such livers contain an abundance of quality oil that appears perfectly pellucid and pale-colored with a mild, fresh fish taste.
4. Releasing the oil from the fresh cod livers: Our ancient method for cod liver oil extraction is extremely rare. And it produces the most precious cod liver oil naturally.
Here’s how it works: We create a gentle shift in temperature, from the icy cold water that the fresh livers are submerged in upon harvest, to below-room temperature. This shift naturally triggers the release of the oil.
This shift is also done in the total absence of heat, which protects the oil’s nutritional value. Just as important, we never subject the livers to chemical treatment, solvents, mechanical devices, rendering, Peter Möller’s method (steam), distillation, winterization, putrefaction, decomposition, alkali refining, bleaching, deodorization or freezing (these are dirty words to us at Rosita!). We take every precaution to preserve the therapeutic properties of cod liver oil and its natural abundance of nutrients.
This process is so are because the only way to carry out this subtle, gentle temperature shift is by controlling the entire process from fish to bottle. Great care for the livers is taken throughout each step, so they maintain the optimal temperature that allows the fresh oil to naturally release.
6. A drop of natural antioxidants: We add tiny amounts of the plant rosemary and full-spectrum natural (GMO-free) vitamin E (not isolated vitamin E) to maintain freshness.
7. Bottling: We then bottle the oil in amber glass to extend its shelf life and freshness by protecting it against light. The bottle is then nitrogen-flushed, to preserve freshness by removing oxygen (this ensures safe shipping in all temperatures). The result is 100% unadulterated, wild and raw Extra Virgin Cod Liver Oil, which contains absolutely no synthetic nutrients.
8. Testing: Samples of each batch of Rosita Extra Virgin Cod Liver Oil are third-party tested in a microbiological laboratory and certified to meet strict European regulations for potency and purity. Read the results here.