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The Fish that are in Restaurant Sandwiches

Updated on May 10, 2010
The famous McDonald's Filet-O-Fish
The famous McDonald's Filet-O-Fish

What Kind of Fish is in Your Sandwich?

Most people do not know which fish species are in each of the top fast food restaurant's fish sandwiches. In this blog, I will explain which species are in the best sandwiches and also provide nutritional and additional information to help you decide which fish sandwich is your best choice.

McDonald's Restaurant used to use Hoki as their white fish in their famous Filet-O-Fish sandwiches. Over the past few years, however, Hoki numbers have dropped significantly and according to the environmental organization Greenpeace, Hoki populations may never recover. For this reason, McDonald's now uses primarily Alaskan Pollock in their Filet-O-Fish.

Nutritional information for a Filet-O-Fish is: 380 calories, 18 grams fat, 15 grams protein, and 38 grams carbohydrates.

According to Wikipedia, Alaska Pollock is now the largest remaining source of palatable fish in the world. Greenpeace has them listed on their "red list". This means that Greenpeace believes that they are at a high risk of being overfished and subsequently endangered. However, according to the United States National Marine Fisheries the current harvest of 2.9 billion pounds per year is sustainable and Alaska Pollock are not in danger.

Alaskan Pollock numbers do need to be carefully watched, though, because in 2008 the harvest fell 38 percent and this was the lowest harvest in the past 30 years (Wikipedia). Also, many species rely on Alaskan Pollock for their food source: salmon, halibut, sea lions, fur seals, and humpback whales all depend on Alaskan Pollock.

Burger King Restaurant and Arby's Restaurant also use Alaskan Pollock in their fish sandwiches. The BK Big Fish sandwich has 640 calories, 32 fat grams, 66 grams of carbohydrates, and 23 grams of protein.  The Arby's fish sandwich contains 540 calories, 27 grams fat, 51 carbohydrates, and 23 grams protein.

Wendy's Restaurant uses North Atlantic Cod in their fish sandwich.  According to the United States National Marine Fisheries, the cod fishery is tightly regulated with no overfishing occurring.  The Wendy's fish sandwich contains 500 calories, 24 grams of fat, 52 carbohydrates, and 18 grams of protein.

I hope this short blog has given you some information about fast food fish sandwiches that you were previously unaware of.  Hopefully, no more fish species will be overfished like the Hoki and we can enjoy fish sandwiches for years to come!


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      Cathy Jo 3 years ago

      What's wrong with minced fish? It's still fish no matter how it's sliced, right?

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      Dave Holland 7 years ago

      All of these sandwiches are minced though. Not an actual fillet among them. ewwwwwwwwwwwww