The older I get, the hipper I become. I used to say I was closer to an artificial hip than being hip. Guess I was wrong. Old ways are the new ways. I’m a huge canned fish guy.
Whoever heads up PR for the anchovy lobby deserves a few extra zeroes at the end of their paycheck. After reportedly being killed by millennials just four years ago, canned fish—like tuna and sardines—are surging in popularity, receiving huge boosts from TikTok and sustainability trends.
Sales of canned seafood shot up by 10% (to $2.7 billion) in the US in 2022, according to Euromonitor International. The primary driver? TikToks in which aesthetic, photogenic tinned fish boards are prepared as part of a romantic date night charcuterie.
While some users claim the trend is “giving Great Depression,” it doesn’t seem to be slowing down. Over the course of last year, users on the app posted their #tinnedfish dinners—some claiming to do this every week—and the hashtag now has more than 26 million views.
Companies are jumping aboard the cannedwagon, utilizing vintage design styles in packaging and developing new strategies, like selling pairing kits, to move fish. Scout Canning, a popular Vancouver-based brand, told the WSJ that its revenues jumped 82% in 2022.
Could be nice for Earth, too: Tinned fish’s long shelf life, lack of refrigeration requirements, and recyclable packaging make for a more climate-friendly protein than many other meats.—MK