Cod Liver Oil

  • Would EVCLO be considered as "Excellent" by Weston A. Price himself?

    Researchers at the Price-Pottenger Nutritional Foundation have delved into the archives of Dr. Weston A Price and sifted through hundreds of photos, manuscripts, papers and notes to discover the cod liver oil that Dr. Price described as "Excellent".

    This information had been hidden for decades, but is now available for the very first time.

    Dr. Price's notes describe a cod liver oil that falls directly in line with how Rosita produces Extra-Virgin Cod Liver Oil (EVCLO).

    Squibb cod liver oil was deemed "Excellent" and used the following process:

    • Fish caught on small boats
    • Livers brought to shore the same day
    • The oil captured raw/fresh and is light (pale) in color
    • Never heated
    • No chemicals
    • Protected from sunlight, moisture and oxygen

    Rosita’s EVCLO is all that… and much more!

    • Rosita only catches Gadus Morhua (the best type of cod)
    • Sustainable line-fishing method is used to catch the fish
    • Only ceramic knives are used to extract the liver (metal contributes to oxidation)
    • The livers and the oil never come in contact with metal during the entire process
    • Each and every liver is hand inspected for health; only the very best are used
    • A proprietary natural method is used to remove contaminants (no heat and no chemicals)
    • Organic Rosemary and full-spectrum vitamin E are used as natural antioxidants
    • Each bottle is nitrogen flushed and capped oxygen-free
    • From fish to bottle within 48 hours

    And this is why Rosita's EVCLO costs more, because it is fresh and is handled with the utmost care.

    Dr. Price would have considered EVCLO to be an excellent cod liver oil!


    Rosita Big Cod Fish

    About the Price-Pottenger Nutrition Foundation

    The Price-Pottenger Nutrition Foundation (PPNF) was charged with the duty of maintaining the entire archive of Dr. Weston A. Price's work. PPNF was initially founded in 1952 as a non-profit organization, and was originally known as the Weston A. Price Memorial Foundation. Please visit their website at to find out more about this highly-respected organization.

    Click here to read the full article "Cod Liver Oil: A Historical Perspective" by the Price-Pottenger Nutrition Foundation.

  • Production of Rosita Extra-Virgin Cod Liver Oil (EVCLO)

    Rostia Extra-Virgin Cod Liver Oil (EVCLO) is sourced and undergoes the following processes:Rosita EVCLO Production Methods


    Sourcing the Fish. 

    Rosita Real Foods is located on the island of Donna in Northern Norway, where the deep fjords contain some of the cleanest ocean waters still remaining in the world. Thanks to strict quotas, protection of breeding grounds, as well as conservation treaties entered into with the Russian government over the past fifteen years, cod populations in Norway have returned to pre-World War II numbers and they continue to grow each year. The Rosita family comes from a long line of Nordic fishermen with the skills and knowledge of the surrounding waters. Rosita strictly catches the Atlantic Cod (Gadus Morhua) using the traditional line-fishing method. Historically, it is the Atlantic Cod’s liver oil that is well documented for its healing effects. Moreover, it has made Norway world famous as the Mecca of cod liver oil production. Each liver is inspected for health and plumpness with only the finest of the livers used to make Extra Virgin Cod Liver Oil.

    Cod Liver Oil Extraction.

    The Ancient Vikings observed an interesting phenomenon when fishing for cod, ratfish, shark and other fish that produced life sustaining liver oils. When a fresh caught cod was brought up to the surface and the liver eviscerated from the fish, the change in temperature and pressure from the ocean depths to the surface pressure and room temperature caused a natural exuding of the oil from the liver of the fish. Nearly 100% of the liver oil could be collected using this completely natural technique. The shark and ratfish liver oils were stored for long periods of time; however, the cod liver oil was consumed relatively quickly due to its propensity to go rancid. Today, we know it is the presence of vitamin E naturally found in shark and ratfish liver oil that provides antioxidant properties. Cod liver oil contains very low levels of vitamin E and was therefore consumed immediately or frozen by our Viking ancestors. The Rosita family has revived this ancient practice of extracting fish liver oils. The process is simple, but can only be performed on freshly caught fish straight from very cold waters. No heat, mechanical pressure, solvents or chemicals are ever used to extract the precious golden oil from the cod’s liver.

    Contaminant Filtering.

    EVCLO is tested for contaminants on a regular basis. All EVCLO batches are run through a proprietary filtering system that removes contaminants without the use of any heat or chemicals. The contaminant filtering process uses materials from the ocean to bind contaminants together and remove them from the oil.

    Once Rosita applies their rare & unique extraction technique to obtain the oil from the liver, Rosita then uses a method which is 100% natural, environmentally friendly - without any form of emission to air and water. This proprietary method retains ALL of the oils vitamins, antioxidants and natural fatty acid composition. Everything is done with respect for nature. The whole process occurs without the use of heat, chemicals or vacuum. Using this method, all that is required is a biological polysaccharide that occurs naturally in the ocean, and found in certain marine organisms, which has antimicrobial and antioxidant activities. It also has the property to bind itself to a variety of organic contaminants and proteins, which can then be removed as a solid protein mass. Binding to proteins is advantageous because these can reduce oil quality with time.

    The basic 100% natural cleaning protocol occurs in the absence of oxygen and can be summarised as follows: an aqueous solution of the natural marine-derived polysaccharide is prepared and mixed into the raw oil to obtain a homogenous suspension. This is allowed to rest. The natural polysaccharide with bound contaminants will precipitate into a bottom layer which may be separated from the raw oil by filtration or use of a decanter. This is a handcrafted process which does not require the use of heat or chemicals.

    The simplicity of the process is described as "dropping a wedding ring in a glass of water and then reaching in and picking it out".

    The effectiveness of this cleaning protocol has been shown in a two year pilot study conducted by The Norwegian Institute of Food, Fisheries and Aquaculture Research. The method has further been optimized based on the results of a research project with the University of Stockholm.

    This is a huge departure from the invasive deodorization and molecular distillation processes that are commonly used by commercial cod liver oil producers. It is the use of high heat in the commercial processes that destroys most of the vitamins A and D. Destroy these precious nutrients and you destroy the very reason for taking cod liver oil in the first place. Rosita works very hard to make sure the cod liver oil is minimally processed to retain all of the natural vitamins A and D plus the omega 3 DHA and EPA. This ensures the consumer is getting all of the potent healing effects cod liver oil is famous for. No synthetic vitamin A, synthetic vitamin D, synthetic anti-oxidants or flavorings are ever added to EVCLO.

    Paper Filtering.

    Once the oil has passed through the contaminant filtering process, it is then paper filtered to remove any remaining fish proteins. Using gravity alone, the oil passes through a series of paper filters roughly equivalent to coffee filters. The end result is pure cod liver oil that is fresh, wild and raw.


    Due to the lack of natural vitamin E, cod liver oil goes rancid (oxidizes) quickly. After consulting with top researchers and universities in the field of antioxidants, Rosita developed an all-natural antioxidant package that would prevent the oil from oxidizing and going rancid. Using a combination of organic Rosemary herb and full spectrum vitamin E from organic seeds (gluten-free, soy-free), getting the proper balance in place was critical. Too much and the antioxidants become pro-oxidants, creating the opposite of the desired effect. Too little and the oil easily goes rancid. It took Rosita two years to produce an antioxidant package that worked perfectly. A tiny drop of antioxidants is added to each bottle of EVCLO to ensure the oil will remain fresh during transport, storage and consumption.


    Commercially refined cod liver oils often require flavorings to mask a rancid taste. No flavors are ever added to EVCLO. It is our instinctual sense of smell and taste that finds rancid oils repugnant and prevents us from consuming them. Covering up or disguising a rancid taste effectively by-passes this natural instinct. It is important to Rosita that the consumer is keenly aware whether or not EVCLO is going rancid and to stop taking it. The reason for taking cod liver oil is to increase and maintain your health.


    The EVCLO process from fish to bottle occurs within 48 hours. During the entire process, the oil never comes into contact with reactive metal that can accelerate oxidation (rancidity). The lights and temperature in the bottling facility are kept low to minimize oxidation factors. Each bottle is nitrogen flushed and then capped oxygen free.

    Storage and Shipping.

    Each batch of EVCLO is made fresh to order and shipped express to Corganic's US warehouses located in Washington State and Virginia where they are cold stored. Due to the antioxidants and oxygen free bottling, Corganic is able to ship orders of EVCLO to customers without the use of cold packs. When received by the customer, EVCLO is required to be kept in the refrigerator, especially after opening or for long term storage, where it may be kept in the freezer.


    Click here to buy Rosita Extra-Virgin Cod Liver Oil (EVCLO)




    Please visit our blog post that details the industrial processing method that is used to produce most commercial cod liver oil.

    Industrial Production of Cod Liver Oil
  • Industrial Production of Cod Liver Oil: A Fairy Tale

    Fatty acids are classified as saturated, monounsaturated, or polyunsaturated. We can use the story of the three pigs to illustrate how the body uses and stores each type of fat. Each pig went out into the world to build their own home. The first pig built a house of straw, the second pig a house of twigs, and the third pig a house of bricks.

    Saturated fats such as coconut oil, palm oil, lard, tallow, and duck fat are the house of bricks. They are highly stable because all of the carbon-atom linkages are filled, or “saturated,” with hydrogen. Saturated fats are excellent for cooking and frying because they remain stable when exposed to high heat. The heavy-duty ‘brick walls’ of saturated fats are the most resistant to breaking down due to heat, light, moisture, and oxygen.

    Monounsaturated fats are the house of twigs. Usually coming from seeds or nuts, these fats are liquid at room temperature. Monounsaturated fats have one double bond in the form of two carbon atoms and therefore lack two hydrogen atoms. While some monounsaturated fats can be used for cooking, their smoke point (the temperature at which the oil starts to emit smoke) is not as high as saturated fats. Olive oil, peanut oil, and macadamia nut oil are examples of monounsaturated fats. They are best used for cooking at lower temperatures, sauteing, and in salad dressings. Keep these oils in cool, dark storage places to extend their freshness.

    Polyunsaturated fats have two or more pairs of double bonds and therefore lack four or more hydrogen atoms. The unpaired electrons at the double bonds make these oils unstable and highly reactive. They are, of course, the house of straw. Found abundantly in nuts, seeds, and vegetables, as well as fish oils, polyunsaturated oils have a low smoke point. They’re best used as salad oils or for supplementing one’s diet. The highly sought-after omega-3 fatty acids are polyunsaturated fats. In plant oils, such as flaxseed oil, walnut oil, poppy seed oil, and sunflower seed oil, the omega-3s come in the form of alpha-linolenic acid (ALA). In oils such as fish and cod liver oil, they are in the form of eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA). Omega-3 fatty acids are fragile and oxidize (go rancid) quickly. Fresh and unprocessed polyunsaturated fats should be refrigerated and kept away from light, oxygen, moisture, and metal as much as possible. They should also be consumed in a relatively short period of time before the big bad rancidity wolf comes knocking.

    A Wolf Dressed in Sheep's Clothing

    Wolf in Sheep's ClothingLargely unknown to the public is that commercial cod liver oils go through a battery of processing steps involving high heat, high pressure, vacuums, solvents, moisture, and chemicals. The fragile omega-3 fatty acids are heated so high, in some cases, that trans fats are formed, which remain in the oil. Heavy metals and other contaminants from fish sources in polluted waters, as well as toxins formed due to improper handling, long-term storage, and exposure to heat and oxygen, must be “cleared” from the oil prior to bottling. These highly refined processing steps are designed to create an easy-pouring, shelf-stable cod liver oil. However, the processing steps themselves create additional harmful substances, for which more heat and solvents are required. Each step further weakens the integrity and nutritional value of the oil. Big bad wolves (and even good wolves) use their keen sense of smell to seek out their prey. The human sense of smell is not nearly as sensitive as the wolf’s, but we do use our sense of smell and taste as a preservation instinct, which keeps us from eating rotten and spoiled foods, and even foods that have become rancid. The nose and taste buds give the signal to reject rancid foods before they are ingested or even before they enter the mouth. Industrial cod liver oil processes (similar to vegetable oil processes) eliminate the rancid taste and smell, tricking our senses into believing the oil is fresh and nutritious. Putting fish oil into capsules or adding flavors further disguises undesirable odors and tastes.

    Industrial Production of Cod Liver Oil


    Industrial cod liver oil is sourced and undergoes the following processes:

    Sourcing the Fish.

    Depending on the producer, commercial cod liver oil could come from actual wild-caught cod, or it could come from pollock or haddock (sourced from Alaska and/or Russia) or other fish species, both wild-caught and farmed. The international production of cod liver oil is regulated by only one rule—the final product must match the specific EPA/DHA ratio found in raw cod liver oil. Cod liver oil contains about 9% EPA and 14% DHA, whereas fish oil generally contains about 18% EPA and 12% DHA. Cheaper oils are often added to achieve the correct EPA/DHA balance. The oil, regardless of the country of origin, is then bottled and sold as true Norwegian or Arctic cod liver oil.

    Cod Liver Oil Extraction.

    Wild cod are caught in large trawlers that spend weeks at sea. In the best scenario, the fish are eviscerated at sea, and the livers are collected in containers and transported to the rendering plant. At worst, the livers are collected and stored aboard the ship for long periods of time, where they undergo excessive oxidation. Upon arrival at the processing facility, the livers are ground up and then either heated for a length of time or cold pressed mechanically to extract the oil from the livers. The remaining liver mass is then heated and put through a decanter to remove solid parts, before it is centrifuged, separating the liver mass into crude oil, water, and sludge. At this point, the crude oil intended for human consumption is further processed, while the residues are dried to produce liver meal to be sold as fish and animal feed. Most cod liver meal is shipped to Southeast Asia for the shrimp feed industry. The idea that cold pressed cod liver oil is somehow raw or gently processed compared to heat rendering is a marketing ploy. Cold pressing refers to the extraction of the oil from the liver. Once extracted, however, the oil is subjected to high heat during the degumming (212° F), deodorization (374° F or higher), and molecular distillation (392° F) steps.

    Carbon Treatments.

    Carbon treatments are used on the initial crude oil to remove dioxins, furans, and polyaromatic hydrocarbons (PAH), which are toxic. The European Union recommends the reduction of dioxins, furans, and PCBs in feed and food. It sets out action levels for certain food sources, including farmed fish, to encourage member states to proactively reduce dioxin levels. When these contaminants occur in wild-caught fish, the reason is environmental pollution rather than a point source; therefore, no action levels have been set for wild-caught fish. Generally, carbon treatment is necessary for farmed fish and fish caught near industrial areas.


    The crude oil is hydrated, heated to 100° C (212° F), and treated with phosphoric acid to separate the phospholipids, resins, proteins, minerals, and other materials intrinsic to cod liver oil. The main reason for the removal of phospholipids is that some of the compounds, particularly the calcium and magnesium salt of phosphatidic and lysophatidic acids, are strong emulsifiers. If these compounds remain in the oil during the alkali refining/neutralization step, they may inhibit the separation of the soaps. Phospholipids (also called phosphotides) will react with water to form insoluble sediments.

    Alkali Refining or Neutralization.

    Due to the length of time between harvesting the fish and sitting in holding tanks, the oil’s triglycerides break down, through hydrolytic rancidity, into free fatty acids, creating a rancid smell/taste, and the oil begins to turn brown. To remove free fatty acids, pigments, phospholipids, and water-soluble materials, it is necessary to alkali refine the oil. This process produces soaps that must be removed with water or steam washing, followed by centrifuging.

    Water Washing.

    Water washing and silica treatment remove the soaps created by the alkali, oxidation products, and other trace metals.


    Drying removes the moisture from the water washing. Moisture, heat, oxygen, light, and reactive metals further contribute to the oil’s rancidity.


    The major objective of bleaching is to return the oil to an acceptable pale color using clays treated with mineral acids. Depending on how long the oil has been sitting, up to 2% bleaching earth may be used. Acid-activated bleaching earth also cleans out the hydroperoxides in the oil formed during previous steps.


    Winterization concentrates the omega fatty acids. This is addition by subtraction. The oil is cooled to sub-zero temperature, causing crystallization and reduction in the amount of saturated fatty acids. Triglycerides and waxes are also removed. Removing the saturated fats and triglycerides further destabilizes the oil, as the remaining polyunsaturated fats, in the form of omega-3 fatty acids, are very fragile and oxidize easily. The human body does not require concentrated levels of essential fatty acids, especially in an isolated form. Denaturing the oil creates an imbalance that severely weakens its effectiveness.


    To remove additional free fatty acids, mono- and di-glycerides, hydroperoxides, aldehydes, ketones, chlorinated hydrocarbons, volatile compounds (rancid fishy smells and taste), and pigments formed during the previous processing steps, deodorization is necessary. During this process, the oil can be heated up to 190° C (374° F) or higher as live steam passes through the oil at low pressure. This step may lead to the formation of trans fats (trans isomers) of EPA and DHA. A study on fish oil capsules on the European market found that all products studied had levels of trans fats. Trans fats were found in up to 4.5% of the total EPA and up to 5.9% of the DHA. This step also damages or destroys most of the vitamin A and vitamin D naturally found in cod liver oil.

    Molecular Distillation.

    Molecular distillation removes most of the remaining pesticides and organic pollutants, which include dioxins, lindane, DDT, as well as bromated compounds (flame retardants) and reduces all such environmental pollutants to lower levels. Temperatures can reach 200° C (392° F). Sometimes this step is used as a replacement for deodorization. Molecular distillation is also responsible for a tremendous loss of vitamins A and D naturally occurring in cod liver oil and the creation of trans fats due to high heat.

    Synthetic Vitamins.

    Almost all of the natural vitamin A (retinol) and vitamin D3 (cholecalciferol) is removed during the industrial processing of cod liver oil. At this stage, the majority of cod liver oil producers add vitamin A from a synthetic source, retinyl palmitate. Synthetic vitamin D3 derived from lanolin in sheep wool as a cholesterol source is purified to form 7-dehyrocholesterol, irradiated to form D3, and added to the highly processed cod liver oil. Sheep's wool is not a natural component of cod liver oil. Synthetics may also contain additives, colorings, fillers, byproducts, and other chemicals not found in the natural versions and are produced with the aid of harsh chemical reagents. Many animal studies have shown differences in absorption of synthetic compared to natural vitamins. Synthetic vitamins do not perform the same functions in your body as vitamins found naturally in whole food, which are very complex and work with other nutrients to produce their specific biological effects. Many synthetic vitamins deplete your body of other nutrients, and the kidneys must work harder to excrete them through your urine.


    Once the oil is cooled, antioxidants are always added to processed fish oil for human consumption to protect the oil from further oxidation. “Natural” forms of antioxidants, such as ascorbic acid, isolated vitamin E tocopherols from soy, citric acid from GMO corn, and spice extracts are often used. The most common synthetic antioxidants are BHA (butylated hydroxyanisole), BHT (butylated hydroxytoluene), TBHQ (tert-butylhydroquinone), and propyl gallate.


    To cover up the rancid fishy taste, most commercial cod liver oil producers will add flavorings such as “natural lemon flavor” to their products. While the flavor may be naturally derived from the peel of the lemon, the actual contents are proprietary, and the flavoring companies do not have to divulge their processes or ingredients (only certify that the flavoring is free of the eight major allergens). The flavorings are not organic, and some customers may have a reaction to the flavoring because of the citrus content. Other producers will use synthetic citrus flavorings and fruit flavorings derived from a mix of proprietary chemicals.



    Fresh Cod Liver Oil is Now Available

    Manufacturers of commercial cod liver oil would have you believe that some or all of these processes improve the nutritional value and cleanliness of the cod liver oil. The truth is that these processes are destructive to the oil. Cod liver oil is recommended and taken for the beneficial levels of vitamin A, vitamin D3, and omega-3 fatty acids naturally contained in wild-caught cod. As outlined above, the refining process severely damages these nutrients. The addition of synthetic vitamins in cod liver oil creates a product that is essentially no better than taking synthetic vitamin pills, which won’t include the fishy aftertaste. Most of the fragile omega-3s are broken down into free fatty acids and removed, along with a percentage of the remaining EPA and DHA containing trans fats. While these processes may be profitable for the cod liver oil producers and relatively inexpensive for consumers, the end result is a sterile oil with little to no healing effects that is likely to add oxidative stress to the body.

    Click here to learn more about the production of Rosita Extra-Virgin Cod Liver Oil

    Rosita EVCLO Production Methods

    Rosita Real Foods, based in Northern Norway, takes an old-world (paleo) approach to creating their Extra Virgin Cod Liver Oil (EVCLO). The Rosita family uses their own small fishing boats to fish the pristine waters of northern Norway, just as their Viking ancestors did. Only wild-caught Atlantic cod (Gadus morhua) are harvested, and the livers are individually inspected for health and plumpness. The extraction of EVCLO requires no heat, chemicals, solvents, putrefaction, or pressure. The raw oil then passes through seven layers of paper filters (similar to coffee filters) to remove any remaining fish sediment, followed by a proprietary sponge-like process that removes contaminants without the use of heat or solvents. A tiny drop of natural antioxidants (organic rosemary herb and organic vitamin E) is added to each bottle to extend the freshness of the fragile polyunsaturated omega fats. The process, from fishing to bottling, is completed within 48 hours. EVCLO is the first and only raw and fresh cod liver oil on the market. No other cod liver oil or food found anywhere in the world contains the high levels of vitamin D3, vitamin A, and omega-3 EPA and DHA in their natural state and proper ratios. No flavors are added to fresh EVCLO, and no processes are used to disguise the taste.

    Click here to buy Rosita Extra-Virgin Cod Liver Oil


    • O’Connor A. What’s in Your Fish Oil Supplements? New York Times. 12 Jan 2014
    • Bimbo, A. The Production and Processing of Marine Oils. The AOCS Lipid Library.
    • Hjaltason B. and Garaldsson GG. Fish Oils and Lipids from Marine Sources. In
    • Modifying Lipids for Use in Food. F.D. Gunstone, edit. CRC Press: Boca Raton FL 2006. 64.
    • Ibid, p 74
    • Rajakumar K. Vitamin D, cod-liver oil, sunlight, and rickets: a historical perspective. Pediatrics. 2003 Aug; 112(2):e132-5;  Hjaltason B. and Garaldsson G.G., 56
    • Editorial. Oilless Cod Liver Oil. JAMA 20 Feb 1915; 64(8) 667-8
    • Ottoboni A. Ottoboni F.  The Modern Nutritional Diseases. 2013. NV: Vincente Books; Hjaltason B. and Garaldsson G.G., 57.
    • Mercola J. Important Cod Liver Oil Update. 23 Dec 2008.;;  Cannell J. Newsletter: Vitamin A Toxicity. Vitamin D Council. 15 Dec 2008
    • Sciotto C. Mjos SA. Trans Isomers of EPA and DHA in Omega-3 Products on the European Market. Lipids. 47: 650-667/
    • Hjaltason B. and Garaldsson G.G. 68.
    • Ibid. 64-68.
    • Ibid. 68-70.
    • Ibid. 70
    • Ibid 68-69
    • Albert BB et al. Fish oil supplements in New Zealand are highly oxidized and do not meet label content of n-3 PUFA. Scientific Reports 5(7928).  21 Jan 2015
    • Fresh or rotten?  Rotten fish oil polluting the market and putting health at risk.
    • Rubin Report.   Lite oksiderte omega-3 oljer og potensielle helsefordeler. NOFIMA 196:4647  October 2010,
  • What is in your cod liver oil?

    Children on the autism spectrum require copious amounts of absorbable nutrients to help reverse and prevent further damage to their nervous system. When food is not able to furnish the necessary levels supplementation becomes an important component of their diet. Cod liver oil is a whole food supplement that is highly recommended by nutritionists and holistic practitioners. Considered a superfood in some circles the oil extracted from the codfish’s liver is loaded with natural forms of vitamin A, vitamin D3 and Omega 3 fatty acids.

    Cod liver oil has a colorful history. In the early days cod liver oil was one of several fish liver oils highly sought after by the Scandinavian Vikings for health and vitality. During the Industrial Revolution (mid-1700’s to 1900) the cod’s abundant liver oil was used primarily for commercial use as lantern fuel, tanners oil, lubricants, paint base, etc. In the late 1700’s it was discovered that cod liver oil had tremendous healing powers when ingested. The Industrial Revolution also saw the rise in rickets as a major health issue. Cod liver oil prevented rickets but it was also known to cure gout, tuberculosis infections, rheumatism and other health issues.

    The popularity of cod liver oil took off in the early 1900’s. No longer extracted for commercial use the oil was rendered and bottled for shipments around the globe as a medicinal. Children everywhere were given their daily ration of cod liver oil much to their dismay, for as much as the oil was a healing agent the rancid taste was disgusting. By the early 1960’s most of the cod liver oil production in Norway was bought up by the large pharmaceutical conglomerates. The production of the oil took on a very different look that is still in use to this day. Many of the new production techniques purify the oil, provide a milder taste and increase the shelf life. And while all of these ‘improvements’ make for greater profitability they also destroy many of the nutrients inherent in the oil.

    Most all of the popular cod liver oil brands e.g. Nordic Naturals, Carlsons, Mollers, Barleans, Sonne, Solgar, NOW, Sectrum, Swanson, Twin Lab, etc. are purified to the point where the natural vitamin A and vitamin D3 are damaged or completely destroyed.

    The following is a list of processes most of these companies employ for the production of cod liver oil:

    •  Alkali refining: Removes free fatty acids (a sign of rancidity).

    •  Bleaching: As cod liver oil goes rancid (which happens quickly) the oil goes from a beautiful pale golden color to being cloudy and murky. Eventually the oil turns brown in color. Bleaching removes the color substances and the oil is once again clear in appearance.

    •  Winterization: removes saturated fats

    •  Deodorization and Molecular Distillation: Removes pesticides, PCB’s and much of the vitamin and nutrient content. Heating ranges from 200 to 400 degrees F.

    •  Addition of Synthetic and ‘Natural’ Vitamins: Much of the synthetic vitamin D added to cod liver oil to compensate for the natural vitamin D destroyed in processing is in the form of vitamin D2. Cod liver oil naturally contains vitamin D3 which is the same form your body produces when exposed to sunlight. Vitamin D2 does not follow the same pathways in the body as vitamin D3 nor is it as easily absorbed leading to possible vitamin toxicity. Nordic Naturals and other producers will add natural vitamin D3 is from lanolin to compensate for vitamin D3 destroyed in processing. The lanolin is separated from wool fat, purified and exposed to UV-B radiation. It is not a process designed by nature and anyone allergic to lanolin may have concerns. The addition of synthetic and natural vitamins does not have the same ratios and synergistic healing effects of the vitamins naturally found in cod liver oil.

    •  Addition of Synthetic Antioxidants: Vitamin E from soy and other allergen producing sources are added to prevent further oxidation (rancidity) of the oil.

    •  Addition of Synthetic Flavors: To completely mask the taste of fish artificial mint, strawberry, lemon or other flavors are added. So called natural flavorings are not derived from the actual berry, fruit or mint leaf but rather from ingredients that create an aroma perceived as being natural.

    When fish oils are deodorized and distilled, important micronutrients some of which are not yet understood by the science community are forever destroyed. Picture a fine China plate broken into hundreds of tiny pieces and then put back together, it is never the same as the original. Similarly once destroyed, the many nutrients and important synergies inherent in cod liver oil cannot be put back together in their original form. They are forever lost. The complexities and ratios of the vitamins and lipids can never be duplicated by the addition of synthetic or even ‘natural’ vitamins.

    The major cod liver oil producers are careful to protect the Omega 3 fatty acids DHA and EPA during processing and often artificially concentrate them for advertising purposes. Most people are unaware that fish and fish oils contain more than just Omega 3 fatty acids. Science is only aware of the function of approximately seventeen of the 50 plus fatty acids contained in fish and fish liver oils. Certain cod liver oil species contain unique fatty acids structures that may play important roles in the healing process. Destroying fragile nutrients and fatty acids defeats the purpose of taking a fish oil. You want the entire nutrient structure intact.

    In the last twenty years there has been very little in the way of choice when it comes to cod liver oil. Most every cod liver oil brand you see at the store or online is over processed as described above. That has recently changed with the introduction of Extra Virgin Cod Liver Oil (EVCLO). Produced by a small family run company in Northern Norway called Rosita EVCLO is the first fresh cod liver oil ever created for worldwide distribution. Only wild caught Atlantic cod (Gadus Morhua) fished from the deep Arctic fjords.


    Extra Virgin Cod Liver does not use heat, chemicals, solvents or pressure to extract the fresh oil from the cod’s liver. Tiny amounts of natural antioxidants (Rosemary and vitamin E) are then added and the oil bottled quickly in refrigerated and oxygen free conditions. Extra Virgin Cod Liver Oil contains all of the natural and full spectrum vitamins and fatty acids that once made cod liver oil a powerful healing medicinal.

    The taste of EVCLO is fishy but very fresh and quite easy to take by spoon even for children. For those children and adults with sensitivities to fish and fish oils Rosita also makes Ratfish Liver Oil. Only drops of Ratfish Liver Oil are needed to obtain high levels of nutrients and the taste is very easy on the palate. Both Extra Virgin Cod Liver Oil and Ratfish Liver Oil are available at

    For more information on EVCLO please visit

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