February 07, 2017

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From pristine ocean waters to the world’s most discerning palates

A Polar Seafood Greenland fishing trawler against a backdrop of Greenland scenery. Some of Polar Seafood’s exports to Japan include cold-water shrimp and Greenland halibut.

Japan, one of the world’s largest and most-discerning consumers of seafood, tasks importers with sourcing the very best that the earth’s oceans and waterways have to offer for its market. For over the past 30 years, Polar Seafood Greenland — the largest privately owned company in Greenland and one of Scandinavia’s leading seafood exporters — has been providing Japanese consumers with quality produce fished from the pristine waters of Greenland, Iceland and the Russian and Norwegian territories of the Barents Sea.

“Japan has been a key market for us from the early days of our company,” said Bent Norman Petersen, co-founder and president of Polar Seafood Greenland. “During the country’s economic boom in the late 1980s, approximately half of our turnover came from Japan. Japanese demanded first-class products and we were fortunate enough to be in a position to deliver. Today, Japan remains one of our three largest markets, and our business there continues to be steady.”

The company’s principal exports to Japan are cold-water shrimp, snow crab, Greenland halibut and redfish. These varieties are imported by a range of Japanese customers — some of whom Polar Seafood Greenland has been working with for decades. “We’ve been serving a number of larger and more specialized Japanese companies for many years, and we have seen their reputations develop within the seafood industry,” said Petersen. “We consider them to be long-term friends and loyal business partners.”

Having reached the milestone of achieving 3 billion Danish Kronor ($425 million) in turnover in 2014, Petersen attributes a significant part of the company’s success to its Japanese market. He shared his perspective on the role his company plays in promoting Greenland-sourced seafood to Japan: “I like to point out that Polar Seafood acts as a bridge between Japan and Greenland. We have been supplying quality seafood from Greenland to Japan for many years, and we are committed to strengthening our presence in Japan as we move forward.”

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