Caviar is one of the most expensive foods in the world. The Caspian Sea, as the largest source of sturgeon in the world, supplies more than 10% of the world’s caviar.


The main species of Caspian sturgeon are the Russian sturgeon, the Russian sturgeon, the Persian sturgeon, the sturgeon and the ozone sturgeon.



Sturgeon, or sturgeon, from the sturgeon family, is one of the few aquatic species that dates back several hundred million years to the Jurassic Age, and therefore sturgeons are called living fossils of the world, which together with their phylogenetic evolution have survived to the present day. These fish are divided into 27 species and subspecies in the world, of which 6 species live in the Caspian Sea. The value of sturgeon is not because of the use of their meat but because of their eggs, which are known as sturgeon or black pearl. There are different types of caviar such as golden, red and black caviar, of which black caviar is of considerable value.


The Caspian Sea alone accounts for 93% of the world’s caviar and sturgeon reserves. There are also 5 species of world sturgeon living in this sea, which in terms of quality are “elephant fish”, “Qarabrun or Iranian sturgeon”, “Gold (Chalbash) or Russian sturgeon”, “Shep”, respectively. “Ozone fish.”


Elephant fish: It is the largest fish in the inland waters of Iran, which is ranked first in terms of caviar quality, and samples of it have been caught with a weight of about 1400 kg and an age of more than 100 years. It spawns once every 2 or 3 years and matures between the ages of 14 and 17, and is ranked as the most expensive fish and caviar in the world due to its best caviar. It has a height of one and a half meters to more than four meters, its fishing record in Iran was 980 kg along with 120 kg of caviar.

Persian sturgeon: It is now considered an independent species, but was previously considered a subspecies of Russian fish. “Qarahbrun” in Turkish means “black nose” which has the second rank of value. At present, due to artificial reproduction, it has surpassed the Russian species in terms of multiplicity. It is larger than the Russian species and has a higher sturgeon quality than it is. They are somewhat similar in appearance, although a darker color with white pigments extending to the nose separates it from the Russian sturgeon. It weighs 60 to 130 kg and is 1 m to more than 2 m long, reaching maturity between the ages of 12 and 14.

Russian sturgeon: It is one of the species that is found in all parts of the Caspian Sea and its caviar is also called golden, which is the third most valuable and reaches the age of spawning and maturing at the age of 12 to 16 years. It has a length of 1 to 2 meters and a weight of 60 to 100 kg.

Sheep: It is usually a migratory fish that comes to the shores of Iran by spawning and lays its eggs in the catchment rivers of the Caspian Sea. It has a lifespan of 30 years, is lightweight and has a small number. It ranks fourth in terms of value. With a length of more than 1 meter and light weight, it matures between the ages of ten and 14 and reaches the age of ovulation.

Ozone fish (Dracula): is the smallest caviar fish in the Caspian Sea, which in Iran is mistakenly called all sturgeon. It ranks last in terms of quality because it uses finer and cheaper caviar. It is facing problems in terms of artificial reproduction and its number is decreasing under natural conditions. In translation, his name has a long nose. It matures between the ages of 8 and 12. It is equivalent to 1 to 1.5 meters in height and weighs less than other fish of this family in the Caspian Sea.


Method of preparation

Caviar alone is the most aristocratic breakfast in the world. Many people eat it raw or with egg yolks or onion crumbs, and some eat it the size of a spoonful with fragrant vegetables or a small piece of bread and butter. Some caviar enthusiasts like it cold with a small spoon without bread. Some people like the pungent smell of fish like it and the taste of riot, although the taste and smell of caviar may not be pleasant at all for many.


As black caviar is better known in Iran and southern Russia, red caviar is more popular in Siberia and the Far East. Although red caviar is cheaper than black caviar, it has no less taste and nutritional value than black caviar. Red or black caviar can be purchased at all Russian grocery stores. In deli shops, a few red caviar seeds are served on a slice of bread with a parsley leaf.


Method of fishing and exploitation

It takes 12 to 15 and sometimes 16 years to extract caviar from a fish. In the past, sturgeon were anesthetized with a rubber mallet to protect them from the blows of their tails, and then the caviar was emptied and the meat was taken to the market. Today, using cesarean section, the eggs are removed from the fish belly and some of it is left in the fish belly for reproduction, then the fish is quarantined in special pools for 3 months, after which it is marked. And return to the sea. They can do this up to 6 times per month.


Properties of caviar

Caviar is an energetic food that has a very pleasant taste and smell. The protein in caviar is mainly composed of the amino acids arzin, histamine, isoleucine, lysine and methionine. The fat in caviar is also divided into two main categories, which are “25% cholesterol” and “75% lecithin”.


Consumption of caviar prevents depression and cardiovascular diseases, because caviar has a very high concentration of omega-3 fatty acids. In addition, caviar is rich in a compound called “Ctacosand”, which is a long-chain fatty alcohol that is converted to fatty acids in the body. These obtained fatty acids play an important role in the synthesis of myelin (nerve cell lining). For this reason, caviar consumption is very effective in the health of nerve cells. In countries where fish and caviar have a special place in people’s eating habits, the rate of depression is much lower than in other countries. The presence of omega-3 fatty acids in caviar prevents high blood cholesterol, which in turn prevents cardiovascular disease. In addition, caviar is very effective in preventing rheumatoid arthritis (diseases of the joints), gastrointestinal diseases and some types of cancer. Caviar is also rich in iron, which is why it is recommended for people with iron deficiency anemia.


Nutrition information

Caviar is very perishable and should be refrigerated until consumed.

Pasteurized caviar has a slightly different texture. It is less perishable and may not need to be refrigerated before opening.

Compressed caviar is made up of damaged or brittle eggs and can be a combination of several different eggs. Specifically refined, salted and compressed.

One tablespoon of caviar provides the daily requirement of adults for vitamin B12, and also has a lot of cholesterol and salt.


How to eat caviar

Caviar is preferred most mornings and early meals. One of the most common ways to eat caviar is to put some caviar on toast covered with butter and eat it. When the caviar package is opened, it must be consumed before 5 days and after that, the taste of caviar changes. Some people believe that consuming caviar with a steel (metal) spoon and in a metal container will change the taste and reduce its quality. Accordingly, caviar is usually eaten with ceramic and oyster spoons. The minimum daily consumption of caviar is 5 grams. Aromatic vegetables, sweets and bread are used along with caviar. Caviar should not be rushed and should be eaten little by little.


Caviar in Iran

In Iran, the western shores of the Caspian Sea, especially the coast of Bandar Anzali (from Ghazian to Kapurchal) is the most important place for sturgeon fishing, where only half of Iran’s caviar is extracted. At present, there are more than 90 sturgeon farms in the country, about 50% of which are located in the provinces of Mazandaran, Gilan (Talesh city with an annual production of 2,500 kg of farmed caviar is the first caviar production in Gilan) and Golestan) And the rest are scattered in other provinces such as Hormozgan, Fars, Qom, Khuzestan and ….


Caspian Sea

93% of the world’s sturgeon stocks are in the Caspian Sea and the management of conservation, reproduction and release of sturgeon in the Caspian Sea is with Iran. Iran releases about 20 to 22 million juvenile sturgeon into the sea annually. In addition, Iran is one of the largest caviar producers in the world.

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