Frequently Asked Questions
How do you read the code on Chicken of the Sea products?
The code marking on the container, pouch or bag identifies each pack. It tells where and when the product was packed as well as the pack style, the ingredients and other information regarding the product. Each packer considers this information strictly confidential and, for this reason, we cannot share the code breakdown. Code information is available from our Consumer Affairs department.
Why are there bones & skin in my can of Traditional Salmon?
"Traditional" refers to the process by which salmon has been packed for many years, that is the whole body of the fish including the bones and skin is placed in the can. The high heat sterilization process softens the bones and skin to the point where they can be easily mashed and blended into salads, casseroles and other delicious dishes. Chicken of the Sea also produces salmon in a skinless and boneless pack for those consumers who prefer it without the skin and bones.
Is Chicken of the Sea's salmon farm-raised or wild-caught?
All Chicken of the Sea salmon is wild-caught in the waters of the Pacific. None of our canned and pouched salmon, which include traditional red salmon, traditional pink salmon and boneless & skinless pink salmon, are farm-raised. A natural source of the fatty acid omega-3, which positively impacts heart health and more, our salmon is a good source of protein and nutrients and can be enjoyed without the related health concerns to farm-raised salmon.
Why is my Solid White Tuna not always white?
White tuna packs must meet certain color criteria when measured with a light meter. The term "white," however, does not mean that the tuna, when cooked, will be absolutely white, but only that it comes from the lightest in color of all tuna species. In fact, cooked albacore may vary in color from nearly white to light pink, beige or tan. Occasionally, it may also have a slight gray cast. The variation is attributed to fish size as well as time, place and manner of capture.
How long is canned tuna edible?
Commercially canned and pouched food may be safely stored for several years as long as the container is not bulged, damaged or leaking in any manner. A concern with prolonged periods of storage is that the product begins to lose some if its palatability. We recommend that stocks of canned or pouched goods be rotated in your normal food supply so that none is stored much longer than a year prior to consumption.
How do you store products after they are opened?
After opening, any remaining product should be placed in a sealed container (not the can, pouch or cup) and immediately refrigerated. The product should be used within 3-4 days.
What is our Dolphin-Safe Policy?
Chicken of the Sea remains fully committed to the 100% dolphin-safe policy implemented in April 1990. This policy guarantees that Chicken of the Sea will not purchase tuna from vessels that net fish associated with dolphins, and we require certification of dolphin-safe fishing practices from all tuna suppliers.
What is our policy related to sustainable fishing?
As a leading American tuna brand, we are actively working to ensure that there is plenty of tuna today, and for generations to come. We are members of the International Seafood Sustainability Foundation and through a partnership between the tuna processing industry, the world’s leading fishery scientists and the World Wildlife Fund (WWF), we are actively engaged in scientific research to monitor tuna stocks, bycatch rates and to continuously find improved sustainable fishing methods. If you would like more information on how we're actively pursuing scientific methods to keep our oceans protected please visit: http://iss-foundation.org/.
What is Chicken of the Sea’s sustainability strategy?
At Chicken of the Sea, we pride ourselves on our long-standing commitment to operating a socially and environmentally responsible business. We realize that our sustainability obligations don’t end when the seafood is caught, but extend all the way through the processing, packaging, and delivery to our consumers.
We work with our industry peers, environmental advocates and scientists to ensure that our suppliers’ fishing practices protect ocean stocks for decades to come. We also believe that our success as a business is dependent on the goodwill and support of our employees, our vendors and our communities. At the core of it all, we place the highest priority on delivering delicious, nutritious and safe seafood to our consumers and retail partners.
The four pillars of our sustainability strategy include employees, facilities, products and suppliers.
How does Chicken of the Sea track its sustainability progress?
In our 2013 report (the most recent year data is available) we set measurable goals for the first time to be met by 2020. Our goals and the progress made in 2013 include:
- 20 percent reduction in electricity and natural gas use (per standard case) by 2020 – We saw a 4.4 percent decrease in electricity usage in 2013, when adjusted for production. Natural gas use increased by 10.2 percent on a production-adjusted basis and is a focus for future efficiency improvements.
- 30 percent reduction in landfill waste (per standard case) by 2020 – In 2013, we experienced a 27.8 percent decrease in the amount of waste it takes to produce a case of product, making significant progress toward our goal.
- 15 percent reduction in water use (per standard case) by 2020 – We saw a 12.8 percent decrease in the amount of water it takes to produce a standard case of product as a result of water conservation efforts.
- Maintain or reduce safety incidents by 2020 – In 2013, we saw a 40 percent lower incident rate than the previous year, experienced only six lost workdays and averaged a 2.5 incident rate compared to the state of Georgia’s 5.4 average safety incident rate.
- Audit 90 percent of seafood procurement spend (on a three-year rolling basis) by 2020 – We audited 37 percent of its vendors and suppliers in 2013 as we launched a formal sustainability auditing process. The third-party audits look at our suppliers’ labor and human rights performance, environmental management systems, and overall business practices. We will audit additional suppliers each year and re-issue audits every three years.
How does Chicken of the Sea enforce social sustainability throughout its supply chain?
We are fiercely committed to preventing human rights violations of any kind and stress ethical procurement of our products throughout our supply chain. This
means abiding by local and international laws and standards – including those outlined under the International Labour Organization’s Good Labor Practices –
for upholding the human rights of workers.
Our supplier code of conduct also explicitly prohibits child and forced labor, forbids any discriminatory acts, respects freedom of association and collective
bargaining, and promotes safe working conditions and occupational health and safety. Without compromise, if a supplier has been found to be in violation of
our code of conduct to any degree, this will result in immediate termination of trade relationships.
Our Supplier Code of Conduct explicitly lays out our expectations on social and environmental issues for our first-tier suppliers. You can read our Code of Conduct in more detail on our website.
How does Chicken of the Sea responsibly source its seafood?
We've joined forces with the International Seafood Sustainability Foundation and World Wildlife Fund, some of the world's most respected ocean experts, to develop and implement programs designed to drive sustainability to the heart of our procurement practices. We specifically utilize best practices for conservation measures put forth by these two groups.
Why the name Chicken of the Sea?
In the "old days", fishermen referred to the white albacore tuna as “Chicken of the Sea.” It was called this because the white color and very mild flavor reminded them of chicken. The founder of the company thought this would be a unique name for a brand of tuna, and the Chicken of the Sea brand is now known worldwide.
Can tuna be frozen?
Tuna may be frozen in a freezer bag or air-tight container. We do not recommend the product be left in the can or pouch.
Do you have to refrigerate pouched products?
Since the pouch is a vacuum-sealed product, there is no need to refrigerate the product prior to opening.
Why do the nutritional values in the nutrition fact panel differ?
Differences in catch location, water depth/temperature and diet of the fish can affect the nutritional content of the tuna. Because of this, we have developed different label statements to ensure that the nutritional facts on the product purchased are as accurate as possible.
Why did I find a bone in my tuna?
Bones are occasionally present in canned tuna, although every effort is made to remove them. Highly trained personnel trim the loins entirely by hand. After this process, the loins are inspected several times for the presence of bones that may have been missed. On occasion, however, a bone is embedded in the loin and may be overlooked. The high heat sterilization process, after the fish has been canned, will normally soften them to the point where they will easily crumble.
Why are there crystals or something that looks like glass in my canned seafood?
If you find glass-like crystals in your canned seafood, don’t be alarmed. These are natural occurring minerals called struvite (magnesium ammonium phosphate). When the fish or shellfish is alive, these minerals were important to their health. During the cooking and canning process, the magnesium, ammonium and phosphate can come together in such a way that crystals are formed. Struvite is not harmful and will readily dissolve if consumed.
To confirm that glass-like object you found is indeed struvite, we recommend the following test: Combine 1 part water and 2 parts vinegar, heat to a boil and place the crystal objects in the bowl or pan. If it is struvite, it will gradually dissolve. If it is glass, it will not.
Why do we add vegetable broth to the canned tuna?
Vegetable broth is added to our canned tuna as a flavor enhancer, resulting in a milder flavor. The broth currently used is derived from one or more of the following vegetables: beans (including soy beans), cabbage, carrots, celery, garlic, onions, parsley, peas, potatoes, green bell peppers, red bell peppers, spinach and tomatoes.
Why is there sometimes a gel like substance in my tuna?
As a flavor enhancer, we add vegetable broth to most of our tuna products (this is noted on package label if it is added). Sometimes, the broth does not mix well prior to adding it to the can, which causes the liquid in the can to thicken. This liquid is completely harmless and should be drained similar to water and oil packed tuna products.
Are Chicken of the Sea products gluten free?
Nearly all of Chicken of the Sea products are gluten free. The following products are not gluten free:
• Tuna Salad Lunch Solutions Kit
• Tuna Salad Kits (foodservice sizes)
• Smoked Teriyaki Oysters
• Coastal Cuisine Tuna in a Ginger Sauce With Rice
• Coastal Cuisine Tuna in a Light Pineapple Sauce With Rice
• Coastal Cuisine Tuna in a Teriyaki Sauce With Rice
Are Chicken of the Sea products Kosher?
The majority of Chicken of the Sea canned seafood products are OU Pareve approved (which is noted on the product label), which includes the following:
• Light Tuna
• White Albacore Tuna
• Yellowfin Tuna
• To Go Cups*
• Genova Tuna
• Tuna Salad Kits
• Pink Salmon
• Red Salmon
*Chicken of the Sea's To Go Tuna Salad Cups with made with mayonnaise, and are not OU approved
Is there mercury in canned tuna?
Many types of seafood contain minute amounts of mercury, including tuna. The FDA has set a guideline for permissible levels of methyl mercury in canned tuna at 1.0 parts per million (ppm). All Chicken of the Sea products are within that guideline. Mercury occurs naturally, is widespread in our environment and is present in many of the fruits and vegetables that we consume each day. Mercury in tuna is not present due to industrial pollution, as tuna is a deep-water fish.
Is there MSG in any Chicken of the Sea products?
The only Chicken of the Sea products that contain MSG are Sardines in Mustard Sauce, Sardines in Tomato Sauce, Sardines in Hot Sauce and Sardines in Louisiana Hot Sauce.
What is omega-3?
Omega-3 fatty acids are polyunsaturated fatty acids that occur predominantly in deep-sea saltwater fish. These fatty acids appear to have a positive effect on heart rhythm and may even reduce the incidence of the most common type of stroke. In fact, based on current research, Omega-3 may reduce the risk of heart disease. Further research shows it may also have a role in preventing macular degeneration, a common form of blindness.
How long can I keep frozen shrimp in my freezer?
For the best quality and taste, we recommend using frozen shrimp within 3 months of purchase.
Can I eat shrimp raw?
No, all shrimp should be cooked regardless of form and size.
What is the nutritional content of Chicken of the Sea Sardines?
To see the nutritional content for our sardines, please select a product below:
• Sardines in Hot Sauce
• Sardines in Mustard Sauce
• Sardines in Oil, Lightly Smoked
• Sardines in Tomato Sauce
• Sardines in Water
• Brisling Sardines in Olive Oil
• Brisling Sardines in Pure Spring Water
• Brisling Sardines, Mediterranean Style
Do your products contain GMOs?
While the seafood we source has always been GMO-free, the vegetable broth or other flavor enhancers, such as soy, used can sometimes contain genetically modified ingredients.
To comply with the Vermont GMO labeling law effective July 1, all of our previously produced shelf-stable seafood products that may contain GMOs and are shipped to Vermont and New York, New Jersey, New Hampshire, Maine, Pennsylvania, Massachusetts, Connecticut will be relabeled to note “Partially Produced using Genetic Engineering.”
By the end of 2016, 100 percent of our shelf-stable seafood products will source GMO-free ingredients. Additionally, as of July 1, all shelf-stable tuna produced in our domestic facility will be made from a non-GMO vegetable broth, followed by our shelf-stable produced internationally by September 2016. Once our shelf-stable seafood products are made from non-GMO ingredients, these products will be labeled GMO-free.