This year’s National Fish & Chip Day promotional activity reached an audience of 33.8 million with an equivalent advertising value of £1.22 million.
These figures are down only marginally on last year’s (36m and £1.23m respectively), with organiser NEODA fighting to get heard over a media saturated with stories of shops facing closure, huge price rises for consumers and high tariffs on Russian white fish.
In an evaluation of the campaign, NEODA said: “This publicity did have a detrimental effect on our own efforts to switch the narrative and sell in the positive, celebratory stories we had lined up.
“During our usual ring-round of national and key regional media we were met with reluctance from editors and producers to include any further fish and chip stories.”
“That said, there was still some excellent coverage of the day.”
NEODA praised the many shops that went all out to celebrate the nation’s favourite dish as well as those operators and suppliers that took part in roadshows in London, Wales, Edinburgh and Cambridge, with the latter attended by the Shadow Minister for Fisheries.
Social media highlights include a tweet by chef and restaurateur Gordon Ramsay that clocked up over 1,000 likes, a post by coach company Stagecoach West Scotland which gave followers details of which fish and chip shops were on each bus route, and retail giant Tesco which asked customers to vote if curry sauce has a place alongside fish and chips.
National coverage was also high again this year with The Sun and The Daily Mirror among the newspapers dedicating column inches to the day, while air time was given by stations including LBC, Talk Radio, Heart FM and BBC Radio 2.
When it came to TV, we were spoilt for choice with segments on BBC Morning Live and This Morning, and John Molnar cooking fish and chips live on Saturday Kitchen. In addition, ITV Wales watched on as Zohaib Hussain, owner of Zero Plus Fish Bar, successfully set a new Guinness World Record for wrapping five portions of chips.
As a result of the activity, followers increased across National Fish & Chip Day’s three social media platforms while separate analyses by NEODA revealed the number of people talking about fish and chips on the day compared with a ’normal Friday’ rose from 181,000 to a staggering 320 million, generating an advertising value £7.56million.