Minister gets tough on grocery chains

The Norwegian government is finally cracking down on grocery retailers and wholesalers who dominate the market and thus, it’s believed, limit competition. Torbjørn Røe Isaksen, the government minister in charge of business and trade, formally presented 39 measures to Parliament on Friday aimed at making sure the dominant players comply with competition law. Isaksen’s “Report […]

Norway wins ‘best cheese’ again

Norway hosted international cheese makers’ equivalent of a “world championships” in Bergen over the weekend, after a Norwegian cheese won the biggest award in Spain two years ago. Norwegians won the top prize once again, after doing well at last year’s championships, too. The awards have put Norway on the map for those who love […]

Much-loved TV cook dies at 94

Ingrid Espelid Hovig was Norway’s first  TV cook who taught Norwegians how fish could be prepared in many ways and enjoyed, introduced them to parsley and  brought international tastes and trends into their kitchens while also perfecting Norway’s own traditions. Norwegians were having a hard time digesting her death on Friday despite her age of […]

Farmers demand more subsidies

Their most supportive political party (Senterpartiet, Sp) is mired in national shame and scandal but that hasn’t stopped Norway’s powerful farmers’ lobby from demanding NOK 1.8 billion in additional taxpayer funding for next year. The support would once again come in the form of subsidies and tariff protection from imported agricultural products. The farmers formally turned […]

Pigs suffering at Norwegian farms

Agricuture Minister Jon Georg Dale has called the pork industry and its representatives in on the proverbial carpet, after terrible conditions have been revealed at pig farms in southwestern Norway. Another case of poor animal welfare was reported just last week, the latest in a string of embarrassing incidents for farmers who survive on public […]

Norway shuttering the summer ‘seter’

PHOTO FEATURE: The long tradition of moving sheep, cattle and goats up to grazing land at higher elevations lives on in Norway. A new study shows, however, that fully 99 percent of the traditional mountain dairy farms known as a seter or støl, where women looked after the animals and made butter and cheese, have been shut down. […]

REMA 1000 recalls chicken

Norwegian grocery store chain REMA 1000 was recalling all chicken sold in its stores from May 4-10, because of fears it may be infected with the E-coli bacteria. Anyone who has eaten chicken from REMA 1000 and fallen ill during the past week was urged to contact a doctor. Alarms rang when a routine control of 48,000 chickens produced […]

Agriculture reform a tough row to hoe

For the first time in years, there was plenty of Norwegian lamb available in the stores this Easter and at relatively reasonable prices. Farm production is higher than ever, but farmers and their advocates remain dissatisfied and the government’s plans for more reforms face constant challenge. Agriculture Minister Jon Georg Dale of the conservative Progress Party rolled […]

Rema 1000 drops major suppliers

Grocery shopping in Norway has generated lots of criticism and complaints over the years, because of market concentration, high prices and relatively poor selection. Now one of Norway’s leading chains, Rema 1000, has really upset the shopping carts by removing many major brands from its shelves, in favour of local suppliers and only a few national conglomerates. The […]

Minister aims to reform farming

UPDATED: Agriculture Minister Jon Georg Dale launched a road show of sorts this week as he held the first of six open meetings around the country. He’ll be promoting and defending the conservative government’s latest plan to reform Norway’s heavily regulated, subsidized and protected farming industry, but faces the proverbial tough row to hoe. The plan was predictably blasted by […]