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SUSTAINABILITY LIBRARY 2023 Products Healthy products

Healthy products

Seafood – an important source of protein for future generations.

The UN Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) has estimated that the world's population will increase  to approx. 9 billion people by the year 2050.

A population growth of approx. 30% will require increased food production of approx. 30%, based on current food production volumes. The FAO has estimated that the  increased demand for seafood will be in total 40 million tons by 2030.

Only 30% of the earth's surface is land – the other 70% is covered by sea.

Today, less than 5% of the protein consumed worldwide originates from the sea. There is no doubt that we will need some source of protein in the future, making the potential for increased production of food from the sea particularly relevant.

Farmed seafood is highly sustainable in a climate  perspective for several reasons:

  • Production at sea does not require a lot of space, as production is three-dimensional.
  • Salmon is a poikilothermic animal, which means that it adapts to sea temperatures and does not require an energy supply for heating, as opposed to housing for animals on land.
  • Most species of seafood require relatively low volumes of fresh water.
  • The volume of feed required by most species to grow is very low, 1.2 kg for salmon.
  • Most species provide a high yield, i.e. a high percentage of the fish can be utilised for human consumption.
  • Fish has the lowest carbon footprint when compared to other types of protein.

In 1999, 60% of all deaths and 43% of all illnesses were related to overweight, diabetes and osteoporosis. In 2025, these figures are expected to be 73% and 60% respectively.

Unhealthy diet can cause various types of illnesses. The lifestyle diseases now emerging in large parts of the world can be prevented by ensuring a correct diet. All dietary experts recommend that we eat more seafood and less red meat. We are in a unique position to contribute in this area. We therefore take an active role with our partners to encourage people to eat seafood, and to increase knowledge of, and access to, seafood in different arenas.

Recent consumer surveys have indicated a reduction in the consumption of seafood among children and young people. This can be a serious problem in the years to come if we cannot change this trend. An increased intake of seafood will help people improve their diets and will reduce the incidence of lifestyle diseases.


Fatty fish has a high Omega-3 content and a low Omega-6 content. We tend to focus on Omega-3 in our diets and forget Omega-6.

The World Health Organization (WHO) is concerned about the high consumption of Omega-6 in our diets and recommends that we all reduce the amount of Omega-6 we eat. Seafood often has a high content of Vitamins A, E and D and is rich in the minerals zinc and iodine. Cod is a particularly good source of iodine.

Health authorities recommend that we eat more fish and reduce our consumption of red meat. Increased consumption of seafood has the potential to improve public health. It has been documented that salmon has a positive effect on preventing cardiovascular diseases, and several trials have shown a positive impact on preventing other diseases such as dementia, diabetes, depression etc.

Within the Group, there is a high focus on health – the health of our employees and of both current and future consumers. The individual human being, the consumer, is important both for the community and for us in the Group, as these are the people who will buy our products and therefore secure our jobs.

Lerøy Seafood Group is a partner in the Agreement of Intentions for a healthier diet together with the Norwegian Directorate of Health. The letter of intent should lead to a more holistic, coordinated and targeted cooperation between the food industry and the health authorities to make it easier for consumer to make healthier choices. The aim is to increase the proportion of the population that has a balanced diet in line with the authorities' dietary advice.

Surveillance of undesirable substances and fatty acid profile

As a result of the feed strategy in the Group, by using alternative resources in feed and cleaning the marine fish oil for undesirable substances, we have reduced the level of undesirable substances such as dioxin and DL-PCBs in the salmon by 71% from 2011 (0.662 pg/g) to 2023 (0.192 pg/g). The Tolerable weekly intake (TWI) estimates the amount per unit body weight of a potentially harmful substance or contaminant in food or water that can be ingested over a lifetime without risk of adverse health effects. The TWI for dioxins and DL-PCB is 2 pg/kg body weight. 

Another contaminant that has gotten a lot of attention the last few years is PFAS. It is a group of chemicals classified as carcinogenic and has several adverse effects on humans. The most common source of PFAS is though food and drink. Analysis from 2023 show that salmon farmed by Lerøy has very low levels of the most common forms of PFAS. With analysed values of 0,01µg/kg PFAS in salmon, an adult (75kg) could eat 33kg salmon per week before exceeding the TWI (tolerable weekly intake) set by EFSA.


In Lerøy farmed salmon there are high stable levels of EPA/DHA and analysis show an average level of 1,19 g/100 g in 2023.

This means, by eating a portion (200g) of Lerøy salmon you cover your reference weekly intake (RWI) of EPA & DHA. The RWI for combined EPA & DHA is 1,75-3,5 g. Of the total seafood production in the group, salmon is approximately 50% of the total seafood production.

Read more of the choices Lerøy have made on salmon here


In 2016 the Group made an agreement with Norwegian health authorities. The agreement obliges the parties to work towards reduction of salt.

Main goal

Salt intake in Norway will be reduced by 30% by 2025.

The salt partnership  - "Saltpartnerskapet"

The goal of the salt partnership is to stimulate the food and catering industry to reduce the content of salt in foods and food served, as well as to increase awareness of salt and health in the population. Furthermore, dissemination of knowledge and competence, research, information to consumers and monitoring of the efforts are key tasks.

Key facts and figures

More than 3.1 billion people depend on fish for at least 20% of their total animal protein intake, and a further 1.3 billion people for 15% of animal protein intake.

Often undervalued and discarded parts of the fish, like the head, viscera and back-bone, make up 30-70% and are especially high in micronutrients.

Fish consumption has increased from 9 kg per capita in 1961 to over 20 kg per capita today.