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Maltese top EU consumers of canned fish

Hobz biz-zejt makes Maltese Europe’s most avid consumers of canned fish, with at least one in every two eating tinned fish at least once a week

james
James Debono
12 February 2017, 9:00am
89% of the Maltese buy tinned fish products ‘often’ or ‘from time to time’
89% of the Maltese buy tinned fish products ‘often’ or ‘from time to time’
Despite being surrounded by a sea providing fresh produce, Maltese kitchen shelves are still well stocked with canned tuna and mackarel.

In fact the Maltese, whose hobz biz-zejt is one of their staple snacks, are the most likely in Europe to buy “tinned” fish products.

Malta is the only country among the EU 28 where at least one in every two eat tinned fish at least once a week.

89% of the Maltese buy tinned fish products ‘often’ or ‘from time to time’.

Countries with the highest proportions of respondents who say this include Malta (89%), Spain (86%) and Slovakia (79%), compared with slightly more than half of the respondents in Romania (51%), Germany (51%) and Belgium (52%).

The survey shows that 46% of the Maltese eat fish at home at least once a week. This makes the Maltese the tenth most likely in Europe to eat fish on a weekly basis.

In 24 of the 28 Member States, the absolute majority of respondents say they buy fresh, ‘often’ or ‘from time to time’. Countries with the highest proportions of respondents who say this include Greece (93%), Malta (90%), Portugal (87%) and Spain (87%), while lower proportions can be found in the Czech Republic (52%), Poland (52%) and Sweden (56%).

Consumers in Malta (74%), Italy (59%) and Greece (59%) are more likely to buy fishery and aquaculture products (FAPs) from the fishmonger, compared with respondents in Slovakia (10%), the United Kingdom (19%) and Finland (22%).

In 25 out of 28 Member States, the majority of respondents say they buy fishery and aquaculture products at the grocery store, supermarket or hypermarket. More than nine in 10 consumers of FAPs in Finland (95%), Sweden (93%) and Slovakia (92%) say they do so, while consumers in Malta (40%) and Greece (46%) are the less likely to buy fishery and aquaculture products at the grocery store, supermarket or hypermarket.

The absolute majority of respondents in two countries prefer wild products – Greece and Malta (both 60%) – whilst half of the respondents in Portugal (50%) and France (50%) prefer their fishery and aquaculture products to be wild. Least likely to have a preference for wild products are respondents in Slovakia (18%).

james
James Debono is MaltaToday's chief reporter on environment, planning and land use issues, ...