There are many ways of producing cod liver oil. From the highly processed and commercialised processes of large industries to the small-scale and traditional production methods. Whilst Fermented Cod Liver Oil has a lot in common with the traditional production methods, we believe it is a class apart.
Benefits of Cold Processing
Omega-3 Fatty Acids
The benefits of producing healthy oils in low temperatures have been known for a long time, This is true for all edible oils, such as coconut oil and olive oil, but is most important for cod liver oils. This is because omega-3 fatty acids are particularly vulnerable to heat damage. Omega-3 fatty acids in their natural form are triglycerides. Industrial-scale production of cod liver oils will convert the triglyceride omega-3’s into ethyl esters. Ethyl esters are more chemically stable, and allow the oil to be heavily concentrated and heated. However, these ethyl ester omega-3 fatty acids are not as easily absorbed by the digestive system as the triglycerides.
By producing oil through a cold processing method, the omega-3 fatty acids will be in their natural triglyceride form, which the body can utilise easier, and it will contain a wide variety of lesser-known omega-3 fatty acids.
Vitamins A & D
Vitamin A & D are abundant in cod liver oil. Vitamin D is of particular importance because it is utilised in so many aspects of the body from bone health to immunity, and is also commonly deficient in many populations.
Vitamin D exists in two primary forms – vitamin D2 and D3, with D3 being the most beneficial. However, there is a whole host of vitamin D metabolites, pre-vitamins, and co-factors which are naturally found alongside vitamin D3. These various forms of vitamin D help the body absorb and utilise vitamin D3, so it is important to ensure these are present in the oil. Conventional and highly processed oil often removes all the vitamins, and then adds either vitamin D3 or D2 back into the oil, without any of the metabolites or co-factors.
Fermented cod liver oil benefits from all the naturally occurring vitamin co-factors which often get removed from the oil.
What makes Fermented Cod Liver stand out from other traditionally produced cod liver oils is, of course, the lacto-fermentation of the cod livers. When we ferment the cod livers we create conditions that favour lactic-acid bacteria. Lactic acid bacteria are an important part of the production of many fermented foods such as kimchi and are often responsible for fermented foods’ nutritional benefits. Lactic acid bacteria produce a variety of nutrients that naturally enrich fermented foods, and one of the most important is fat-soluble vitamin K. Being naturally enriched the nutrients will all be in their natural form along with any applicable co-factors or metabolites, rather than being a synthetic addition. It is this natural enrichment by lactic-acid bacteria of Fermented Cod Liver Oil that make it stand out significantly from other traditional or cold-processed cod liver oils.