A report released today (5 January) by Which? consumer group claims that UK supermarkets and high-street stores bulk out the chicken in pre-packaged sandwiches with a combination of water, starch and preservatives while boosting flavour with chicken stock and artificial flavourings.
Which? researchers tested a total of 26 chicken sandwiches from nine UK stores: Asda, Bhs, Boots, Marks & Spencer, Morrisons, Sainsbury’s, Somerfield, Tesco and Waitrose. Of these, only one sandwich from Asda contained meat that hadn’t been tampered with. Otherwise, the meat content of the chicken ranged between 94% and 99%.
The consumer group is calling for shops to list added ingredients more prominently on the front of the package.
Jaclyn Clarabut, who carried out the investigation, told Which?: “We want food companies to come clean, and spell out clearly on the front of packs exactly what shoppers are paying for. Are they paying for meat, or meat pumped up with water, preservatives and starch?”