Which canned tuna in the supermarket in Spain is the best?

by Lorraine Williamson
canned tuna

MADRID – Canned tuna is one of the most sold canned goods in supermarkets in Spain. That is why the Organisation of Consumers and Users (OCU) has analysed the supply of this favourite ingredient in many Spanish households. 

The consumer organisation chose the best two from 32 products from different brands based on taste, amount of salt and price, among other things. After comparing the results, OCU compiled a ranking of the best articles based on their value for money. 

Quality generally good 

The first conclusion of the OCU after analysing 13 cans of tuna on sunflower oil and 19 on olive oil of different brands, is that their quality is generally very good: between 64 and 86 points out of 100. 

In that sense, the canned fish was fresh, with no traces of skin, strange colours or flavours. Nor were there added substances that make you fat. And, unlike bluefin tuna, no worrying levels of mercury were detected. 

Too much salt 

The most negative: too much salt was detected in most cans at an average of 1.04%. In three products this even rises to more than 1.25%. That limit is not recommended by the Spanish Agency for Health and Consumption. 

Also read: Which Spanish supermarket sells the best tortilla? 

A certain amount of miga (shredded tuna) was also found. However, this was always below 18%, which is the maximum limit prescribed by regulations. 

Cogesa Expats

Labelling could be better 

OCU also criticises the labelling of the cans. It could be improved considerably, as there is a lack of information about the fishing area or the way to contact the manufacturer. 

The price 

In terms of price, the OCU notes the difficulty of comparing cans, especially in the case of packs of three, of different sizes and which can weigh between 48 and 104 grams. For this reason, the organisation recommends looking at the total drained weight before choosing a specific weight. After the analysis was carried out, the consumer organisation highlights two products from all the products analysed. Interestingly, these are house brands. 

Star products 

The highest-rated tuna is Aldi’s Silver Salt. The price is €2.69 for the package of 3 cans per 60 grams drained (14.94 €/kg). It gets a rating of 86 points because of its very good taste, soft texture and the right amount of salt. 

This is closely followed by the canned tuna from Hacendado (Mercadona). The price is €5.02 for the pack of 6 cans per 60 grams drained (13.94 €/kg). It achieves an overall rating of 85 points thanks to its intense tuna aroma and taste, as well as its pleasant texture. 

After these gold and silver medals, the consumer organisation also rewards products from other brands, usually in packs of three cans. Consorcio light tuna in olive oil appears on this list of highlights with 84 points, followed by Ifa with 83. Hijos de Carlos Albo, Campos and Frinsa have 82 points. 

In addition to highlighting the best products, the OCU reminds us that, unlike what happens with red tuna, canned light tuna can be consumed by minors, as long as the product is not eaten in excess. In any case, once the can is opened, it is advisable to consume it within the first 48 hours. 

Also read: Eating fish in Spain: which are the safest due to their low mercury concentration? 

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