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On a one-to-five scale indicating the most sustainable options, most Alaskan pollock fisheries have achieved the highest rating of one

Brits could save pennies as well as the planet by opting for pollock more often, our research suggests.

Alaskan pollock is one of the most sustainable seafood options available to shoppers, according to the latest version of the Marine Conservation Society’s Good Fish Guide, which was published this week.

The guide, which uses a simple one-to-five sustainability rating to indicate the most virtuous options, suggests most Alaskan pollock fisheries have achieved the highest rating of one, making their catch a ‘best choice’ for sustainability-minded shoppers.

In contrast, Alaskan cod fisheries vary considerably from one to five with fisheries in the west of Scotland and Cornwall achieving the lowest rating of five - making its catch ‘fish to avoid’, according to the guide. Haddock, plaice and salmon fisheries also still vary considerably in their sustainability credentials, it suggests.

Read more: Marine Stewardship Council promises improvements to its assurance scheme

Pollock is also easier on the wallet. Tesco has this week added three new prepared pollock lines to its chillers under its Hearty Food Co own label sub-brand: a 200g pack of Popcorn Pollock Bites at £2, four Pollock Fishcakes (340g) at £2.20 and a 600g pack of Breaded Pollock Fillets at £2.39. Morrisons is also selling a 300g pack of pollock fillets at £1.50 [Brand View 4 October 2018].

That compares with an average supermarket price of £1.42 for two cod fishcakes (270g), while the average price for two salmon fishcakes is £1.48 (270g), two own-label breaded plaice fillets (280g) £2.73 and a 300g pack of own-label haddock fillets £3.38.

Shoppers get more bang for their buck with frozen pollock, too, our research suggests. Sainsbury’s is selling a pack of 20 pollock fish fingers (600g) for £2 and own-label breaded pollock fillets 500g for £2.50. That compares with average supermarket prices of £1.96 for a 360g pack of 16 own-label cod fish fingers, £3.13 for a 500g pack of two breaded haddock fillets and £3.02 for a 500g pack of breaded cod fillets.

Read more: Iceland launches fish fillets bag of solely bycatch species

It comes as environment ­secretary Michael Gove vowed to boost the sustainability of Britain’s fisheries as he outlined tenets of Defra’s forthcoming fisheries policy at the Conservative Party Conference this week. The policy, set to be reviewed in parliament later this month, will “take back control of our waters” after years of “deep economic and environmental damage” inflicted by the EU’s Common Fisheries Policy, he claimed.

It will restrict those allowed to fish in British waters, leading to more fish for British boats, he said, thus righting “the historic wrong” that left the UK’s fishing industry in decline for years. “We will make sure we fish sustainably by ensuring we decide who fishes in our seas and on what terms,” Gove added.

According to Seafish, Brits splashed out £6.61bn on seafood in 2017, up 4.7% on 2016.