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Hudtwalcker & Co. AS - Since 1743

Cod Liver Oil


The use of fish oils and marine liver oils dates back thousands of years. Hippocrates (460 – 377 BC) and Pliny the Elder (23 – 79 AC) both mention the use of fish oil in medicine. It has also been said that the romans made a fermented fish oil which was a staple in their diets. By the 1700s, infirmaries and apothecaries had noted the success of Cod Liver Oil and began prescribing it to patients suffering from rheumatism. The first written account of the healing effects of Cod Liver Oil taken internally was in a letter, written in 1782 by Robert Darbey, at the Manchester Infirmary in the United Kingdom. And in 1848, the British physician John Hughes Bennett observed that Cod Liver Oil had been used from time immemorial by the fishing populations of Scotland, Sweden and Norway for its general medicinal and strenghtening properties.

Specification Cod Liver Oil EP, BP, USP
Infosheet on Cod Liver Oil
Nutritional Composition

One may date the use of Cod Liver Oil as a food back to the times of the Vikings (about 700 – 1100 AC). The method used by the Vikings to extract oil from cod livers was by filling a large pan with water and letting the water boil. They then placed birch tree branches on top of the pan, and the cod livers where put on top of the branches. As the steam from the boiling water rose, it began to cook the livers and oil from the livers would drop into the pan.

For more information about the history of Cod Liver Oil manufacturing in Norway, please follow this link:

The beneficial properties of Cod Liver Oil through history has generally been as a source of Vitamin A and D, as well as against rheumatism. In more recent years, research has been carried out into the essential fatty acids Eicosapentaenoic Acid (EPA) and Docosahexaenoic Acid (DHA) naturally contained in Cod Liver Oil. The research has led to the view of Cod Liver Oil as also being beneficial to the heart and circulatory system.


Product Specification

The Cod Liver Oil, or Medicinal Cod Liver Oil, available today is the fatty oil obtained from fresh livers of the North Atlantic cod (Gadus morhua) and other species of the Gadidae family by cooking and subsequent cold filtration.

The free fatty acids and odour carrying substances as well as unnatural/typical foreign substances are reduced by subsequent refining and production processes.

Minimum Maximum
VITAMIN A 600 2500 iu/g (*)
VITAMIN D3 60 250 iu/g
IODINE VALUE 145 180 Wijs
SPECIFIC GRAVITY (at 20 degrees Celsius) 0.918 0.927
REFRACTIVE INDEX (at 20 degrees Celsius) 1.477 1.484
COLD TEST clear for 3 hours at 0 degrees Celsius
EPA 7.0 16.0
DHA 16.0 18.0

(*) = international units per gram of oil.
Fatty Acid Composition in %
(as per USP, evaluated from the area percentages of all Fatty Acids greater than 0.05%)

Saturated Fatty Acids

Myristic Acid  C14:0 2.0 6.0
Palmitic Acid  C16:0 7.0 14.0
Stearic Acid  C18:0 1.0 4.0

Unsaturated Fatty Acids

Palmitoleic Acid C16:1 4.5 11.5
cis-Vaccenic Acid C18:1n7 2.0 7.0
Oleic Acid C18:1n9 12.0 21.0
Gadoleic Acid C20:1n11 1.0 5.5
Gondoic Acid C20:1n9 5.0 5.5
Erucic Acid C22:1n9 0 1.5
Cetoleic Acid C22:1n1 5.0 12.0

Polyunsaturated Fatty Acids

Linoleic Acid C18:2 0.5 3.0
Linolenic Acid C18:3 n3 0 2.0
Moroctic Acid C18:4 n3 0.5 4.5
Eicosapentaenoic Acid
EPA C20:5 n3 7.0 16.0
Docosahexaenoic Acid
DHA  C22:6 n3  6.0 18.0

Manufacturing Process

1st step: Steam rendering of fresh cod livers – sludge decanter to separate oil/water from dry matter . oil/water separation – vacuum drying – crude cod liver oil – raw material analysis – check point, rejected material separated

2nd step: Deacidification – vacuum drying – filtration of high melting components – analysis according to raw material specifications – absorbent technology to reduce contaminants – check point, rejected material separated

3rd step: Filtration – analtsis according to raw material specifications – refined cod liver oil – deodorizing (if required) – check point, rejected material separated

4th step: Homogenizing tank to blend different oil batches – blending tanks for antioxidants (if required) – final product tanks – analysis according to specifications – check point, rejected material separated

5th step: Drumming at drumming station with polishing filter – labelling and packing.


In new 190 kg net drums or IBCs


Light protected, not above room temperature, in tightly sealed drums/containers.

Shelf Life

24 months when stored as recommended.