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Monday, 6 July 2015



Herring has been a staple food source since at least 3000 BC.

In AD 240 the Roman historian Solinus wrote that the people of the Hebrides islands, located off Scotland's northwest coast, lived on fish and milk. That fish was herring,

On his deathbed, far from the sea, St Thomas Aquinas asked for some fresh herring, his favorite fish, and lo and behold, a fishmonger, who normally had nothing but sardines, turned up at the monastery door with precisely that item.

By 1300 Herring was being caught in huge numbers in northern Europe where its economic importance rivaled that of spice.

The Dutch introduced salting herring on board around the beginning of the fourteenth century. This allowed longer fishing trips and reduced post-harvest losses, thus improving the production and economics of salted herring.

The Battle of the Herrings was fought in 1429 near Rouvray, France, when French forces tried to disrupt a convoy of fish and arms to the British.

Herring is the most widely eaten fish in the world.

The first barrel of new herring caught in the Netherlands is always sold at auction. In 2010 the barrel of 45 herring went for about £45,000.

The phrase red herring comes from the use of kippers to train or possibly divert hunting dogs.

Sardines are the cans that the fish come in. Herrings are the fish that come in the can.


Herring are forage fish, mostly belonging to the family Clupeidae.

They often move in large schools around fishing banks and near the coast.

The number of herring in the North Atlantic Ocean has been estimated at four billion.

On average a female herring lays about 30,000 eggs at each spawning.

A study in 2003 reported that herring may talk at night by breaking wind. They apparently communicated by firing bubbles from their backsides that sound like high-pitched raspberries.

Sources Daily Express, Food For Thought by Ed Pearce,  Compton's Interactive Encyclopedia 

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