New products & brands to help you bring the flavors of greenland to life.
New products & brands to help you bring the flavors of greenland to life.
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  • Eider

    Thanks to the large plankton and fish occurrences birds are numerous in Greenland: Approximately 60 bird species breed regularly in Greenland, while more than 150 species are summer visitors. The eider, or aavooq, is the most sought after breeding game bird in Greenland due not only to its meat but also because of its insulating down. Eiders are particularly common in coastal regions all over Greenland and broods on small islands and rocks.

    Eiders are part of traditional Greenlandic dishes such as eider in barley gruel, but they have also been incorporated into modern Greenlandic cuisine and are served in gourmet restaurants as for instance eider breasts a la Bourguignon.

    Eiderdown – the world’s best insulation
    It is however especially its down the eider is known for, and not without reason - they provide the world’s best insulation! Small tentacles in the down provide a natural resilience that binds the air, thus keeping the down from collapsing. For the eider this effective insulation means the difference between life and death. Down from geese and other ducks do not have the same tentacles as eiderdown and therefore do not provide the same insulation.

    Ecological Down
    The precious and super insulating down start loosening when the eider moult. The female then distributes the down into the nest to hide and isolate the eggs. Thus the real interesting thing about eiderdown, from an ecological point of view, is that it can be harvested after the ducklings leave the nest with no harm to the birds at all.

    Eiderdown has been used for insulation in the arctic countries for thousands of years. During the colonial period eiderdown was an important source of income for women, who collected the down in the mountains and since sold it to KGH (KGH, The Royal Greenlandic Trade, was a Danish state-run trading company that between 1776-1950 had monopoly on trade with Greenland). The industry reached its preliminary climax at the beginning of the 1900s, when up to 5 ton eiderdown were sent from Greenland to Denmark a year.
    In the late 90s eiderdown again gained focus and the potential is grand - in Western Greenland there are approx. 15.000 couples of eider.

    A luxury of 50.000 DKR
    A duvet of eiderdown costs between 10.000 to 50.000 dkr, depending on how much down there is in the duvet. One duvet usually contains between 0.5-1 kilo down, collected from up to 60 nesting sites over a long period of time. In many ways a duvet of eiderdown can be compared to a Ferrari: A luxury item that many dream of owning, but only produced in very limited numbers.