♫ ♪ ♫ “Oh doctor, oh doctor, oh dear Dr John
Your cod liver oil is so pure and so strong
I’m afraid of my life, I’ll go down in the soil
If me wife don’t stop drinking your cod liver oil.” ♪ ♫♪ ♫ By Great Big Sea
By way of explanation The Cod has come is the direct translation as we’d say The Cod is here (but it’ll cost a small fortune).
We were lucky to be in Oslo when the restaurants received their first delivery of fresh cod ‘The Cod has come’ from the north west of Norway caught in the Norwegian Arctic. 25% of Norway’s 4 million population lives in Greater Oslo so there must have been a lot of fresh cod in trucks making the 1,682km journey from Lofoten on the E6.
The Lofoten area offers favourable conditions for the cod to spawn by way of temperature, depth, salinity and appropriate currents. A mature female will lay over 2 million eggs of which just 20 or so will survive and that reminds me, all things remaining equal, the global fishing industry will pull the last edible fish from the sea in 2048.
Arctic cod are perfectly suited to polar life as they have anti-freeze proteins in their blood.
No doubt this region relies on cod and the liver oil that it produces which is why poet and clergyman, Petter Dass, expressed their dependency on the fisheries. His words were written in the 1690’s, and they still apply today:
“Yea! The fish in the seas are our daily bread,
Should we lose them, we will suffer and dread,
Forced to utter our miserable sighs.”
The cod produces a lot of fish scales which you may like to know is used extensively in anti-wrinkle creams, Botox and hand lotions. I’ve just checked my tub of Nivea Soft which doesn’t mention fish scales amongst the 39 ingredients listed. The cream was made in Spain by the way.