Fish and chips can be enjoyed without your waistline taking a battering, a study found. Experts believe offering smaller versions of our favourite take-away meals could be key to reducing levels of obesity.
Researchers at Newcastle University found that shrinking portions can drastically reduce calorie intake while also keeping customers happy.
They teamed up with a fish and chip supplier to develop a portion with around 600 calories – 1,000 less than a traditional serving and in line with national guidelines for mealtimes.
These were then offered at a dozen fish and chip shops in the North-East alongside their normal menus. Takeaway owners were given a three-hour briefing on excessive portion sizes and how market research had shown many customers wanted to be more health conscious and have smaller meals.
The study found one in five people bought the smaller alternatives while four in ten said they would consider scaling down.
Secret-shoppers, customer surveys and interviews indicated that customers were pleased with the smaller portions and takeaway owners were happy to sell them.