Sardines250.jpg“Born sinner, the opposite of a winner; remember when I used to eat sardines for dinner.” So rapped Notorious B.I.G on Juicy.

Product Junkie wonders if he’d cottoned on to the fact that sardines are an oily fish rich in Omega-3 and packed with Vitamin D and as such would qualify as one of his recommended two portions of fish a week? No, maybe not.

But that, together with the value for money they represent, could well be the reason for a 7% increase to £34 million (Source: Nielsen) in UK consumer spend on fresh sardines in the past 12 months according to Seafish, the authority on seafood.

Karen Galloway, Seafish market insight manager, said: “The popularity of fresh sardines is growing as the quality is high and their sustainability record is impeccable.”

In the UK, the majority of sardines are caught by small boats that head out at dusk from an ancient fishery off the Cornish coast accredited as sustainable by the Marine Stewardship Council.

Previously known as pilchards, the fish were re-branded as Cornish sardines in 1997 although technically the difference is in the size – a sardine is smaller than six inches.

Sounds much better on a menu too.