Friday 7th June will see people across the country celebrating their love of fish and chips as they come together on National Fish and Chip Day. From fish and chip shops, pub chains, restaurants, retailers, to the fishermen and farmers who provide the sustainable and natural ingredients used to create it, the nation will be enjoying this iconic family favourite!
The Great British Fish and Chip Survey 2019
To coincide with this year’s National Fish and Chip Day we wanted to find out how the nation liked theirs! The National Fish and Chip day team conducted a nationwide, online survey which ran from 12 April 2019 until 21 May 2019.
The findings are below but if you would like specific results for your region or other national facts from the survey please call Jo on 07734 050238 or email firstname.lastname@example.org. We can also arrange interviews with national and regional award winning Fish and Chip Shops and industry experts if you wish.
Favourite thing to have on your fish and chips?
Most favourite was Salt & Vinegar – nationally, with a staggering 68% of respondents choosing it, salt and vinegar was the clear favourite thing to have ON their fish and chips. This was followed by just salt chosen by 11% and tartare sauce with 6% beating ketchup with 4%.
Favourite thing to have WITH your fish and chips?
Most favourite was Mushy Peas – When it came to what people wanted to eat alongside their fish and chips, Mushy Peas was a clear winner with 44% of those surveyed choosing it. Second favourite nationally was to have nothing and just enjoy fish and chips on their own which 14% opted for. Curry Sauce came in third with 13%. Bringing up the rear were Pickled Eggs!
Favourite fish to have with your chips?
Most favourite was Cod – Leading the way on choice of fish to enjoy with their chips was cod with 56% followed by Haddock with 29%. Scotland bucks this trend with 74% of Scots choosing haddock ahead of cod. Yorkshire and Humber and those visiting from outside the UK also placed haddock ahead of cod as their fish of choice.
How often do you eat fish and chips?
When it comes to how often fish and chips are enjoyed, a whopping 34% enjoy the nation’s favourite dish at AT LEAST once a week – in the over 70+ age bracket that increases to 43%. Just over a quarter (28%) eat it once a month and 21% pop to their local chippy once a fortnight.
Eat in or Takeaway?
Favourite was Takeaway – 87% of people prefer to take their fish and chips away. The exception were the younger respondents with just 75% of 16-25 year olds preferring a takeaway and a higher number eating in.
Favourite place to each fish chips?
Favourite place was at home closely followed by at the seaside – the favourite place to eat them when they do is at home (46%) closely followed by enjoying them at the seaside which pulled in 37% of the votes.
We asked if people ever asked for a smaller portion of fish and chips – a resounding 61% said no!
With the UK having declared a climate change state of emergency we asked do you recycle your fish and chip packaging – 36% always do and 54% will do so if they possibly can.
What do you call the crispy bits of batter? What a can or worms this question was! 53% nationally call them scraps, followed by batter bits, and bits…but there were some fantastic names suggested including fish bits, crackling, scratchings, batteries, crispies, scrappies, scrunchings, scribblings and scriddles
Other regional variations
Bread and butter was the accompaniment of choice in Wales. More people chose curry sauce in the South West than anywhere else in the UK.
In Northern Ireland no one entertained the notion of a pickled egg, onion or gherkin. Unlike London who were champions of the gherkin!
Visitors to the UK ranked mayonnaise in their top three accompaniments.
Scraps is the most commonly used name for the bonus crispy bits.
In the North East no one chose Plaice.
The 16-25 age bracket were the only ones who ranked Curry Sauce above Mushy Peas!
The over 70s want nothing to do with gravy on their fish and chips. Not a single person in that age group chose it!
National Fish and Chip Day is championed by trade organisation, The National Edible Oil Distributors Association (NEODA). NEODA represents all the major refiners, key packers and distributors of edible oils as well as suppliers of non-oil products (such as batter mix, sausages, packaging, range manufacturers and potato preservatives) in the UK. NEODA President, Ryan Baker, comments, “National Fish and Chip Day has become more successful each year and in 2018 we want it to be even bigger. It’s a celebration of the stars who work hard to bring Brits their favourite traditional takeaway. We want to bring the whole industry together to celebrate and showcase the great British institution that is Fish and Chips.”
What makes a good fish and chip shop?
We all think that our favourite fish and chip shop is the best in the country; but what makes a really good fish and chip shop? According to the judges of the National Fish and Chip Awards, they look for the following things:
The highest quality raw ingredients:
• Sourced in a responsible manner from sustainable stocks/sources. Great shops will have forged strong relationships with their various suppliers.
• Stored and prepared with attention to detail.
• Cooked with care and expertise. The staff of great shops could often be said to literally ‘live, breathe, eat fish and chips’ – it might seem a simple food but it takes a lot of hard work and dedication to achieve fish and chips greatness!
• Served with passion and a smile. Great shops will invest time/resource in ensuring staff are well trained.
What’s the best way to serve fish and chips?
• Chips of a uniform size – light golden exterior colouration with a bit of a crunch – white fluffy, light interior.)
• Firm, flaky fish – absence of bones – pearly white colour – encased in a light airy batter, with good crunch and an even golden colouration.
In recent years we have seen fish and chip shops and restaurants offering a great deal more choice when it comes to serving fish and chips. Many shops now offer a weekly or monthly Gluten free day so those who are following a gluten-free diet or suffer from Coeliac Disease can still enjoy freshly cooked, golden fish and chips. Shops are also offering lighter meals with pan-fried or poached fish and salad as alternatives to traditional battered fish and chips. Winners of the Healthy Eating Fish and Chip Shop of the Year, Towngate Fisheries, offer poached fish; without any batter it is ideal for anyone with a wheat allergy. It is the same price as their fried battered haddock and is prepared to order in just a few minutes. All their meals in their Lighter Options Menu have been nutritionally tested and calorie values are shown on the menu – they also contain as little as 7.4 grams of fat per 100 grams.