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|Nutritional value per serving|
|Serving size||1 sandwich (141 g)|
|Energy||380 kcal (1,600 kJ)|
|Carbohydrates||38 g (13%)|
|- Sugars||5 g|
|- Dietary fiber||2 g (7%)|
|Fat||18 g (28%)|
|- saturated||3.5 g (19%)|
|- trans||0 g|
|Vitamin A||30 IU|
|Vitamin C||0 mg (0%)|
|Calcium||150 mg (15%)|
|Iron||0.8 mg (6%)|
|Sodium||640 mg (43%)|
|Energy from fat||170 kcal (710 kJ)|
|Cholesterol||40 mg (14%)|
|May vary outside US market. 360 kcal (1,500 kJ) in UK. Some restaurants publish nutritional information for the sandwich with the tartar sauce removed.
Percentages are roughly approximated
using US recommendations for adults.
The Filet-O-Fish is a fish sandwich sold by the international fast food chain store McDonald's. It was invented in 1962 by Lou Groen, a McDonald's owner in Cincinnati, Ohio. While the fish composition of the sandwich has changed through the years to satisfy taste and supply shortcomings, the framework of its ingredients have remained the same; a fried fish filet patty, steamed bun, tartar sauce, and pasteurized processed American cheese.
The Filet-O-Fish contains a battered, fried fish patty made mostly from pollock, one half slice of processed cheese and 30 millilitres (0.0011 oz) of tartar sauce. Currently in the UK, however, new operational procedures[clarification needed] in practice have reduced the amount of sauce to 20 millilitres (0.00071 oz) of tartar sauce and fillets are no longer salted. The tartar sauce is made with dill relish and seasoning on a steamed bun. It is similar to the English favourite, the fish finger sandwich. As of 2011 the size of the fish patty was reduced by 20 per cent.
The sandwich was created by a McDonald's franchise owner in Cincinnati, Ohio, named Lou Groen in 1962. Groen owned a McDonald's in a predominantly Roman Catholic neighborhood where his Catholic customers engaged in the practice of not eating meat on Fridays (a practice mandated before Vatican II but that the Catholic Church continues to consider obligatory on Fridays during Lent).
The product was named by Cye Landy of Cye Landy Advertising Agency, which was the advertising firm for that particular McDonald's franchise.
It has become popular with people who do not eat meat-based products or with dietary restrictions concerning meat-based products. For example, in Islam, the fish used in the sandwich is considered halal even without special preparation, while other meats require special slaughter techniques to be halal. The product also remains popular during Lent, and in some countries, like Australia, is now joined by a temporary lentern "fish" menu, including other products like Fish and chips.[verification needed]
The sandwich was the first non-hamburger menu item brought in by new McDonald's company owner Ray Kroc. Kroc made a deal with Groen: they would sell two non-meat sandwiches on a Friday, Kroc's own Hula Burger (grilled pineapple with cheese on a cold bun) and the Filet-O-Fish, and whichever sold the most would be added to the permanent menu. The Filet-O-Fish "won hands down" and was added to menus throughout 1963 until reaching nationwide status in 1965.
The use of farmed fish in the Filet-O-Fish first came about in 1981, when an owner of a New Zealand fisheries company was dissatisfied with the pollock Filet-O-Fish he purchased at the Courtenay Place, Wellington restaurant. Saying to the manager that he could make a better tasting fish fillet, he was handed a box of fillets and told to come back with identical, better-tasting fillets. He substituted red cod for the pollock, and after the manager was satisfied with the better-tasting red cod fillets, ended up in agreement to supply the Courtenay Place restaurant (and eventually several other New Zealand restaurants) with the red cod fillets. The similar-tasting hoki was substituted several years later, due to its competitive market value and its boneless fillets, and eventually was introduced widely in the early 1990s when global pollock stocks were facing low numbers. McDonald's removed the Filet-O-Fish from its menus in the United States on September 26, 1996, and brought it back to its menus on March 22, 1998 due to overwhelming letters and petitions.
In November 2007, McDonald's lowered the use of New Zealand hoki and increased the use of Alaskan pollock, due to declining New Zealand hoki fishery sustainability and large cutbacks in the total allowable commercial catch of hoki by the New Zealand Ministry of Fisheries - from 250,000 tonnes in 1997 to 90,000 tonnes in 2007. McDonald's originally used Atlantic cod, before declining cod catches forced McDonald's to find sustainable fish elsewhere. McDonald's is trying to maintain fish only from areas certified as sustainable by the Marine Stewardship Council, but that is becoming more difficult each year. Hoki is no longer an ingredient as of 2013, since McDonalds lists only pollock as the type of fish used.
As of March 2009, the Marine Stewardship Council placed the Alaskan pollock fisheries in a re-assessment program due to catch numbers declining by over 30% between 2005 and 2008, and by-catch problems with salmon.
As of January 2013 the Marine Stewardship Council stated that the pollock comes from suppliers with sustainable fishing practices, and McDonald's packaging/promotion will reflect that change.
- "Filet-O-Fish". McDonalds.com. Retrieved 2013-10-03.
- Smith, Craig (November 7, 2002). "North Sea Cod Crisis Brings Call for Nations to Act". New York Times. Retrieved 2010-12-30.
- Clark, Paul (February 20, 2007). "No fish story: Sandwich saved his McDonald's". USA Today. Retrieved 2010-12-30.
- "Fasting and Abstinence".
- Pepin, Jacques (December 7, 1998). "Burger Meister RAY KROC". Time. Retrieved 2010-12-30.
- n/a, n/a (n/a). "Travel Through Time With Us!". McDonald's Corporate. Retrieved 2010-12-30.
- Hepözden, Rosemary (2011). O'Flaherty, Brian, ed. Golden Arches under Southern Skies: Celebrating 35 years of McDonald's in New Zealand. in co-op with McDonald's Restaurants (NZ) Ltd. Auckland: Renaissance Publishing. pp. 78–79. ISBN 978-0-9864521-1-6.
- Moore, Bill (June 28, 2011). "Hoki fishery rebuilt, quota to rise, says minister". Nelson Mail. Retrieved July 27, 2011.
- Daily Finance Article
- "Alaska Pollock- Gulf of Alaska — MSC". Msc.org. Retrieved 2013-10-03.
- The Associated Press (2013-01-25). "McDonald's fish to carry 'sustainable' labeling". NY Daily News. Retrieved 2013-10-03.