The Seafish Fish and Chips Nutritional Analysis & Consumer Preferences Project

The Seafish Fish and Chips Nutritional Analysis & Consumer Preferences project has been developed to help fish and chip shop operators make informed decisions concerning the nutritional value of fish, chips and mushy pea meals.

The Seafish Fish and Chips Nutritional Analysis & Consumer Preferences project has been developed to help fish and chip shop operators make informed decisions concerning the nutritional value of fish, chips and mushy pea meals.

The project commenced in late spring 2015 and aims to complete by early 2016.

In December 2014 the EU Food Information for Consumers Regulation came into force and further requirements will be introduced over the next two years. This regulation concerns mandatory nutritional labelling of food and while fish and chips are currently excluded there are two very good reasons why the fish and chip sector should be looking carefully at the impact of this regulation. 

F&C tender

 

Firstly, regulations can change and there may come a time where fish and chips are added and therefore getting 'future proofed' now is a sensible approach to adopt. Secondly, if your competitors have to declare their nutritional values why not follow suit - particularly as you will likely have better values!

Either way, having reliable nutritional information is essential, and the purpose of this project is to analyse, under test conditions, a huge suite of variables (eg. frying medium, batter type, etc.) to build a resource that can be used to inform your decision making.

What do we mean by that? Well, if you are displaying nutritional values, either by choice or by direction, you'll obviously need to have that data but in addition you may want to make changes in order to display the 'best' values. For example, we may find that frying in one medium has twice the fat content as another; by knowing this you may want to make a change in order to reflect this.

An important point to make is that neither Seafish, nor our partners, will be dictating or advising any changes to current practices. It is entirely up to fish and chip operators to utilise the findings and alter their practices if they think suitable.

F&C tender 2

 

The second part of the project is to assess the portion sizes of 'regular' fish, chips and mushy pea meals across the UK. This will allow us to calculate average portion sizes for the nutritional analysis but also provide an important resource for fish and chip operators to determine how they benchmark to the average portion sizes. As portion size is a key factor in cost/profits, we hope this will be a useful tool.

The final part of the project is to explore what customers' views are. Do they want to see nutritional values displayed? Will it impact on their choices? Are they more interested in tradition/taste or nutrition? We will also be asking what their preferred portion sizes are and how is that affected by the nutritional values. Would customers swap fewer chips and a smaller piece of fish for a less nutritional frying medium? All the results will be made available to the fish and chip industry and again, are designed to help you in making informed decisions as required. 

 

F&C tender 3
  
While the project is being led by Seafish, we have established a project steering group comprising a variety of industry representatives and experts to guide us and ensure we are maximising the usefulness of the results.

Seafish have employed an independent research company to assist with the product analysis and consumer insight aspect of the project.

For further details about this project please contact Andy Gray, Seafish Trade Marketing Manager

a_gray@seafish.co.uk