Culture

Study Finds Subway Chicken Is More Than 50 Percent Non-Chicken

When you go into a Subway restaurant and order a chicken sandwich, what are your expectations? Maybe that the bread is fresh-baked, or that you can pile on as many veggies as you would like? What you would also most likely expect is that the chicken is made of chicken, right? According to a recent study done on the DNA of Subway’s chicken by CBC Marketplace, you might not be eating completely what you had hoped.

According to Mashable,

The original CBC report conducted by Matt Harnden, a researcher at Trent University’s Wildlife Forensic DNA Laboratory, found that the chicken used in some of Subway’s wraps and sandwiches contains less than 50 percent chicken DNA, with the remaining majority being soy. Of the six sandwiches tested from various restaurants, Subway’s oven roasted chicken and chicken strips were the worst offenders.

Subway wholeheartedly disagreed with the study and ordered independent studies of its own to be done on the suspect chicken.

“The stunningly flawed test by Marketplace is a tremendous disservice to our customers,” said Suzanne Greco, Subway president and chief executive, in a statement issued to the Washington Post Wednesday night. “The allegation that our chicken is only 50 percent chicken is 100 percent wrong.”

So Subway released its own study conducted by two independent laboratories in order to test the chicken from Canada, the Post reports. The Subway studies evaluated the soy protein in the chicken samples, and found the plant protein to be less than 1 percent of the sample.

So whom are we to believe? CBC published its report in its entirety so that anyone could read it (you can view it here). The company did clarify one aspect of its study on the chicken: “DNA tests don’t reveal an exact percentage of the amount of chicken in the whole piece, but DNA experts have told Marketplace that the testing is a good indicator of the proportion of animal and plant DNA in the product.”

As for Subway, it released a statement which read in part:

Two independent laboratories testing Subway® chicken have found that alleged test results broadcast on Feb. 24 by the Canadian Television show, Marketplace, were false and misleading. Test results from laboratories in Canada and the U.S. clearly show that the Canadian chicken products tested had only trace amounts of soy, contradicting the accusations made during the broadcast of CBC Marketplace.

Maybe it’s time to switch to vegetarianism…