History of "Serrats" Preserves

Serrats in 1890Without a doubt a large amount of history and tradition exists within the companies in the Basque preserve market and in particular the ones from Biscay. When looking at the companies that have this strong historical tradition it is important to speak of the companies from Bermeo where the largest concentration of these companies have existed traditionally.

One of the oldest of these companies was founded by José Serrats in 1890, an entrepreneur from Catalonia, who pioneered the use of the Appert preserving system for fish preserves, using this system at the port in Bermeo.

Dedicated originally to the salting and semi preserving of anchovies, over time other types of fish from the Gulf of Biscay began to be preserved by the company. This resulted in a need to expand and a facility was built in Elantxobe (Biscay), Pasajes (Guipuzcoa), Asturias, and Galicia, and eventually their own fishing fleet. Eventually this was given up to focus completely on the industrialization of the company.

Since the beginning of the 20th century, more than half of the production of the various products made by "Serrats" and "La Pescadora" have been exported. The primary markets that they exported to were France and South America. Currently the largest markets are Europe and North America.

Originally wood barrels were the primary tool used for the salting and pickling of the fish. After the beginning of the 20th century, a better understanding the Appert system of sterilization gave way to the use of cans that could be tightly sealed. Originally they were mostly just large cans given the difficulty of sealing the lids. During the 20's, smaller cans were introduced for private use. Finally glass jars for fish preserves were introduced in the 80's.

Over all these years, the production process has changed very little. The technique has been perfected to achieve a higher quality product, but the traditional process of production has been maintained.

Our preserves continue being elaborated by a meticulous handmade similar to the process used in 1890. These artisanal techniques prevent the fish from losing quality and make our preserves maintain our high standards for flavour and texture.

The selection of the highest quality raw materials combined with the "know how" of more than 5 generations and a strict system of quality control, make our preserves an exceptional product.

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