Calgary, Canada - March 15, 2011: McDonalds Fillet of Fish Meal. Shot in a photography studio on a wood table.
McDonald's Filet-O-Fish Was Almost Made With A Totally Different Fish
By Kalea Martin
McDonald’s Filet-O-Fish sees a significant boost in sales among Catholic customers during the Lenten season, and having a non-meat option is precisely why it was introduced in the first place. The Filet-O-Fish recipe as we know it today took some time to develop, because McDonald's wasn't entirely sure what fish it would use for the sandwich initially.
Ray Kroc, the chain's former CEO, revealed that test recipes for the Filet-O-Fish called for halibut, but he swapped it out for cod because it was cheaper. Kroc didn't want customers to negatively associate the Filet-O-Fish with cod liver oil, so it was referred to as “North American Whitefish” for 50 years.
In 2013, McDonald's began sourcing its Filet-O-Fish from a sustainable Alaskan pollock fishery, and according to McDonald's website, the current Filet-O-Fish still holds to the same standards. In the U.K., there are two types of fish in the sandwich — white Hoki and Pollock —and in China, the Filet-O-Fish is still made with cod per the original recipe, albeit with two patties instead of one.