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Irish Smoked Salmon -vs- Smoked Irish Salmon

  • 05-09-2012 6:44pm
    #1
    Banned (with Prison Access) Posts: 4,991 ✭✭✭ mathepac


    Rushing through Dunne's in Thurles the other evening wondering what to get for the tea when I spotted three Irish mackerel fillets in pepper for €2. Grand says I checking front and back of pack and all seemed legit (Irish product, traceability number, etc.) produced by a company who claimed "four generations of craftsmanship and tradition". I lobbed it into the basket and on an upper shelf I spotted Traditional Blackwater Valley Barbecued Salmon in another packet from the same producer also priced at €2 so I grabbed that as well.

    I opened the salmon first and shock horror! - the white label on the back of the packet (which I hadn't checked in the shop) glared up at me accusingly "Farmed West Scotland". Not a big deal you might think but also inscribed on the same label was "Dunnes Stores".

    So now my questions:

    Was the salmon killed, processed, packed and shipped straight to Dunnes?
    or
    Was it killed in Scotland and partly processed and shipped to Cork for final packaging?
    or
    Was there any value added to Scotch farmed fish here before being sold by Dunnes?

    Quality-waise the mackerel were grand but the skin on the salmon was strangely tough for fish that had, according to the packaging, been barbequed Traditionally in the Blackwater Valley before sale.


Comments

  • Registered Users Posts: 20,299 ✭✭✭✭ MadsL


    Irish smoked salmon = salmon (from any source) smoked in Ireland
    Smoked Irish Salmon = Irish Salmon

    You really don't wanna know about chicken....


  • Administrators Posts: 33,521 Admin ✭✭✭✭✭ dudara


    Moved to Food & Drink

    dudara


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 135 ✭✭ hughjohn


    We've had the same thing before with bread made from 100% Irish milled wheat.
    The wheat was completely milled in Ireland but was actually grown in Canada.

    This is the world of " legal speak" and the marketing men love it because it is easy to give a false impression of a foods origin, without doing anything wrong.

    I have also commented on this on another thread and my conclusion is that if it doesn't say in unambiguous terms that its grown in Ireland , you can fairly safely assume that it is NOT.


  • Banned (with Prison Access) Posts: 4,991 ✭✭✭ mathepac


    dudara wrote: »
    Moved to Food & Drink

    dudara
    Can't think why - it's a consumer issue.


  • Registered Users Posts: 37,136 ✭✭✭✭ Mellor


    mathepac wrote: »
    on an upper shelf I spotted Traditional Blackwater Valley Barbecued Salmon

    Quality-waise the mackerel were grand but the skin on the salmon was strangely tough for fish that had, according to the packaging, been barbequed Traditionally in the Blackwater Valley before sale.

    Ok, so the first packet was labeled as "Irish mackerel". So you would assume that was legit.
    But why did you assume that the second was irish? The label didn't say anything to that effect. Blackwater is incredibly vague, and there's probably 10 blackwaters in the UK and Ireland. I'd never assume it was a reference to a one over the other.


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  • Moderators, Recreation & Hobbies Moderators Posts: 10,561 Mod ✭✭✭✭ Mr Magnolia


    mathepac wrote: »
    dudara wrote: »
    Moved to Food & Drink

    dudara
    Can't think why - it's a consumer issue.

    You can PM dudara to discuss but don't bring it up here please.


  • Banned (with Prison Access) Posts: 4,991 ✭✭✭ mathepac


    Mellor wrote: »
    Ok, so the first packet was labeled as "Irish mackerel". So you would assume that was legit.
    But why did you assume that the second was irish? ....
    Same producer / manufacturer, similar white label with an "IExxxx" licence / source-code on the back. It looked similar enough to me to mislead any but the most alert consumer as to the actual source of the product, pre the packaging step.

    The purpose of posting was to put other consumers on the alert that it wasn't an Irish product and also from a consumer point of view that it didn't taste good. There was also the issue of the in-edible skin, even the cat struggled here, and no doubt as an intended consumer would have had a lot to say.

    There is of course also the fact that the inedible skin formed part of the weight of the product purchased, as if it were consumable, meaning it wasn't good value from a consumer perspective.

    I like to support Irish industry and initiatives as best I can and like to think of myself as an informed consumer, checking labels, places of origin of products etc. My point is that even an alert consumer could be fooled.

    The producer, William Carr & Sons, Cork feature on The Organic Guide to Ireland website, which is a bit of a kick in the nuts for the unwitting consumer of Scotch farmed salmon, re-packaged in Ireland.


  • Registered Users Posts: 14,831 ✭✭✭✭ CJhaughey


    The skin on salmon is tough, its not really edible in the same way that Mackerel or Whiting skin is edible.
    Most processors won't scale the fish as it would simply be a waste of time as it isn't eaten.
    And you can't really hot smoke skinned fillets as they would fall apart.
    Fish is nearly always sold skin on, its simply to fragile to sell skinned for the most part and especially when its been cooked.

    Was the label a sticker or is it printed on the pack?
    Sometimes due to various circumstances its may not be possible to have Irish Salmon and they have to supply Scottish fish instead.
    If you write to W.Carr I am sure they will explain it, they are a pretty reputable company.


  • Registered Users Posts: 145 ✭✭ KM88


    MadsL wrote: »
    Irish smoked salmon = salmon (from any source) smoked in Ireland
    Smoked Irish Salmon = Irish Salmon
    I wonder if the first example even needs the smoke, applied in Ireland, to have come from Irish timber - almost certainly not.

    It reminds me of the sort of blatant sleight of hand that allowed Fiat cars to be sold sporting a "Guaranteed Irish" sticker back in the 70s or 80s - though perhaps not quite as cynical as that.

    In the Fiat case, I think the wheel nuts were tightened up in Ireland. For me, that blatant piece of commercial opportunism destroyed any credibility "Guaranteed Irish" had as a guarantee of anything at all then and ever since.

    The OP's example also illustrates the need to not underestimate the tricksy-ness of marketeers - "Blackwater Valley Traditional" hits all the right buttons for us Paddies but it means absolutely nothing whatsoever. Read the small print, and read carefully between the lines.


  • Registered Users Posts: 145 ✭✭ KM88


    Mellor wrote: »
    But why did you assume that the second was irish? The label didn't say anything to that effect. Blackwater is incredibly vague, and there's probably 10 blackwaters in the UK and Ireland. I'd never assume it was a reference to a one over the other.

    Aren't you the clever bunny?

    To ridicule the OP for making an assumption that you wouldn't make but that many of us would make, and that the marketers likely intended us to make, makes you look a bit smug and supercilious.

    Just saying.


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  • Moderators, Category Moderators, Politics Moderators, Recreation & Hobbies Moderators, Society & Culture Moderators, Regional East Moderators Posts: 12,107 CMod ✭✭✭✭ Dizzyblonde


    KM88 wrote: »
    Aren't you the clever bunny?

    To ridicule the OP for making an assumption that you wouldn't make but that many of us would make, and that the marketers likely intended us to make, makes you look a bit smug and supercilious.

    Just saying.

    If you have a problem with a post, feel free to report it. Personal insults will only earn you an infraction.


  • Registered Users Posts: 145 ✭✭ KM88


    If you have a problem with a post, feel free to report it. Personal insults will only earn you an infraction.

    Am i infracted? And if so, why?

    I don't think I offered any "personal insult" - did I?


  • Banned (with Prison Access) Posts: 4,991 ✭✭✭ mathepac


    KM88 wrote: »
    ... In the Fiat case, I think the wheel nuts were tightened up in Ireland. For me, that blatant piece of commercial opportunism destroyed any credibility "Guaranteed Irish" had as a guarantee of anything at all then and ever since. ...
    Another famous case was the Fyffe's one. They imported green bananas and stood them in a shed for a few days and took out ripened bananas. The industry was classified as manufacturing due to the substantial transformative process that took place.

    My original questions remain unanswered though in relation to the Scotch fish.


  • Moderators, Category Moderators, Politics Moderators, Recreation & Hobbies Moderators, Society & Culture Moderators, Regional East Moderators Posts: 12,107 CMod ✭✭✭✭ Dizzyblonde


    KM88 wrote: »

    I don't think I offered any "personal insult" - did I?

    It's all about perception. Now back on topic please.


  • Registered Users Posts: 14,831 ✭✭✭✭ CJhaughey


    mathepac wrote: »
    My original questions remain unanswered though in relation to the Scotch fish.
    CJhaughey wrote:
    If you write to W.Carr I am sure they will explain it, they are a pretty reputable company.
    No one else is going to be able to speak for that company, AFAIK they don't have a rep on boards.


  • Banned (with Prison Access) Posts: 4,991 ✭✭✭ mathepac


    CJhaughey wrote: »
    No one else is going to be able to speak for that company, AFAIK they don't have a rep on boards.
    I'm not denying them (or Dunnes) right of reply, my purpose was to inform other consumers and if William Carr & Sons, Cork or Dunnes want to post here I'm not stopping them.

    It's a consumer issue targeted at other consumers.


  • Banned (with Prison Access) Posts: 4,991 ✭✭✭ mathepac


    You can PM dudara to discuss but don't bring it up here please.
    I did and dudara says it can be moved back to consumers with your consent.


  • Administrators Posts: 33,521 Admin ✭✭✭✭✭ dudara


    Perhaps this may be of some help

    FSAI guidelines for fish labelling


  • Registered Users Posts: 37,136 ✭✭✭✭ Mellor


    KM88 wrote: »
    Aren't you the clever bunny?

    To ridicule the OP for making an assumption that you wouldn't make but that many of us would make, and that the marketers likely intended us to make, makes you look a bit smug and supercilious.

    Just saying.
    I don't see where I ridiculed anyone. I questioned the basis of his assumption, which is yet to be explained, but that's about it.
    Just because they produce/sell a different variety of fish that's certified irish. I think it's a leap to assume all products are going to be irish, especially if they don't even mention "irish" on the label. Fish, more so than other meat, is very international and as CJ Haughty pointed out, often seasonal.


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