Kaluga Queen

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Kaluga Queen
IndustryAquaculture
Founded2003; 16 years ago (2003)
HeadquartersKecheng District, Quzhou, Zhejiang, China
Area served
Worldwide
ProductsCaviar
Websitewww.caviar-china.com

Kaluga Queen is a Chinese brand of caviar made by the caviar company Hangzhou Qiandaohu Xunlong Sci-Tech Co., Ltd. The company produces 60 tonnes of caviar annually, making it the largest producer of caviar in the world and responsible for 30% of world production.[1][2][3]

Kaluga Queen supplies caviar for 21 of the 26 3-starred Michelin restaurants in Paris.[2]

History[edit]

Kaluga Queen was founded in 2003 by Hangzhou Qiandaohu Xunlong Sci-Tech Co., Ltd., a caviar company affiliated with the Chinese Academy of Fishery Sciences.[4][5] The caviar processing facility was constructed in 2004 and the Kaluga Queen brand created in the following year.[5]

Several years after the founding of the company, CITES imposed a severe curtailment of wild caviar from the Caspian Sea region, creating an opportunity for caviar farming startups to take market share from the traditional caviar powers of Russia and Iran.[1]

Production[edit]

The sturgeon are farmed at Qiandao Lake, a man-made lake surrounded by little in the way of industry.[1][4] There are about 50,000 sturgeon maturing at the farm.[1] At age 6 when the sex of the sturgeon becomes apparent, the males are separated from females for immediate processing while the females continue to be nurtured in pens.[3]

The mature sturgeon are shipped in water-filled trucks from the lake to a processing facility in Quzhou.[1] At the facility the sturgeon's eggs are taken out and "checked, re-rinsed, salted, and sealed in tins in less than 10 minutes".[1][4][5] The sturgeon without eggs is smoked and exported mostly to Russia.[4]

The company raises 5 different species of sturgeon each producing a different variety including beluga.[3]

Reception[edit]

Kaluga Queen's caviar has been favorably reviewed. A writer for Newsweek praised the brand's Schrenckii caviar as having peerless "power and intensity".[1] French chef Alain Ducasse serves it at his portfolio of restaurants.[5]

Media coverage of Keluga Queen has often focused on the Chinese origins of the brand, noting the lack of association between China and caviar. A piece in that's magazine noted that while Kaluga Queen is "hugely successful", the brand still finds it difficult to gain recognition in the international community.'"[6]

At the 2016 G20 Hangzhou summit, which was held in the company's home province of Zhejiang, world leaders attending the summit, including Russian President Vladimir Putin, were served Kaluga Queen caviar.[3]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d e f g "China's Growing Appetite for Caviar and Truffles". Newsweek. December 5, 2015.
  2. ^ a b "The World's Best Caviar Doesn't Come From Russia Anymore". Bloomberg. September 19, 2017.
  3. ^ a b c d "Fishy business". China Daily. December 9, 2016.
  4. ^ a b c d "A Sturgeon Story: Chinese Caviar's Global Rise". FineDining Lovers. April 26, 2016.
  5. ^ a b c d "China's Black Gold". The Peak. June 1, 2016.
  6. ^ "The World Is Eating Chinese Caviar (And Doesn't Know It)". that's. February 4, 2017.