It has traditionally been considered a cheap alternative to cod or haddock but the credit crunch appears to have helped pollack power into Britain’s seafood top 10 this year, according to Seafish, the authority on Seafood in the UK.
The whitefish was once the top pick for cat owners to feed to their pets – but now pollack is storming up the charts as the dish of choice for those feeling the pinch in the current economic climate.
More than 13,000 tonnes of the species was sold across the UK retail market last year as pollack powered in at number eight.
Top of the pops is salmon with 49,000 tonnes shifted in the past 12 months worth a massive £607 million. Salmon's popularity has rocketed over the years, thanks to a huge increase in the farmed variety. Tuna comes in at number two with tinned sales of the store cupboard staple accounting for its success.
At number three is the iconic cod, closely followed by haddock at number four. These whitefish are the fish of choice from your local chippy with cod popular in England and haddock top pick in Scotland.
Prawns take the fifth and sixth spots as the cold water and warm water species are increasingly used as a healthy meat substitute in curries and pasta dishes.
A blast from the past comes in at number seven: our oily friend mackerel. This omega-3 packed fish is easily recognisable by its glossy black stripes.
And traditional pub favourite, scampi, is in at number nine with freshwater trout completing the top 10.
Karen Galloway, market insight manager at Seafish, said: "Pollack's popularity has certainly been helped by the current economic climate as people switch from more expensive fish to cheaper alternatives.
"The top ten also shows Britons prefer mild tasting traditional favourites. Fish is a tasty and healthy protein and we should copy our European neighbours and make the most of the wide variety of seafood on offer in the UK."
A recent survey undertaken by Seafish revealed that more than eight out of ten Britons – 83 per cent – described seafood as healthy but only about one-third manage to eat the recommended two portions of fish a week.
|Britain's top seafood sales|