Frequently Asked Questions

  • What is a sardine?

    “Sardine" is a generic term applied to various kinds of small fish, packed in cans/other containers, in water or various oils/sauces. Sardines are born as sardines. Some are called Brislings, Pilchards, or Silds. The name sardine is derived from Sardinia, a Mediterranean island, where small fish were in abundance. There are over 20 different species of Sardines. There is no fish of any kind, anywhere, which bears the name “Sardine” in its natural original element, either in the scientific or commercial sense of the word.

  • Where do sardines live?

    Sardines can be found all over the world. A large abundance are found in the European North Sea such as Norway and Scotland countries which process the so-called cold water fish, namely Brislings and Silds. Mediterranean countries including Morocco, France, Latvia, Portugal, and Spain pack the southern “warm water” small fish, called Pilchards. Pilchards are a species akin to the Herring, but smaller and fatter. Maine and Eastern Canada “can” small herrings which are also served as Sardines.

  • Why are sardines so healthy to eat?

    First, they are Rich in Omega-3 which is proven to protect against coronary heart disease. Sardines offer the highest omega-3 counts compared to any other fish. Sardines are also Very High in Protein – Ounce for ounce, Sardines have as much protein as prime sirloin – without high levels of cholesterol. (1 Serving = 37grams of Protein; 40% RDA). Sardines are also an Excellent Source of Calcium – Essential to bone development throughout our lives. A 3 ounce serving of Sardines (with Bones) contains more calcium than an 8 ounce glass of milk. Sardines are Low Sodium – also available with no salt added for the salt restricted diets. Sardines provide an Essential Source of Vitamins and Minerals. Loaded with Vitamin D (101% RDA), Riboflavin (B2), Vitamin B12 (222% RDA), Iron, Niacin, Phosphorus and Magnesium contributes to the healthy function of the body. Finally, Sardines are Low Mercury fish. That’s because they are near the bottom food chain, so they don’t ingest harmful chemicals that other larger fish do.

  • What are Omega-3 fatty acids?

    Omega-3 fatty acids are polyunsaturated fatty acids that occur predominantly in deep-sea saltwater fish. Sardines are extremely rich in Omega-3 – proven to protect against coronary heart disease. One of the best sources of natural fish oils is sardines. Sardines offer high Omega-3 benefits compared to other fish and provide a convenient way to incorporate the nutritional benefits of fish oils in your diet. Make sure to consult your doctor about the health benefits of adding Omega-3 fatty acids to your diet.

  • What does “Friend of the Sea” mean?

    Friend of the Sea means that Season products are certified as sustainable for our Ocean. Friend of the Sea ( is an international nonprofit, nongovernmental organization (NGO) whose mission is to conserve the marine habitat. Friend of the Sea is managing the certification of products from sustainable fisheries and aquaculture. With their seal of approval, target stock cannot be overexploited, fishing method cannot impact the seabed and waste management must be in place. All-in-all, it should give you peace of mind in our role as we try to make a difference in the world we live in.

  • What does “NO BPA in can lining” mean?

    Bisphenol A (BPA) is the primary component in polycarbonate plastic and is typically used in the resin lining of most food and beverage cans. However, there are reports that consumption of BPA can be harmful to one’s health. To that end, Season takes careful consideration to make sure that our suppliers provide us with cans that do not contain BPA in the can lining.

  • What is the Non-GMO Project?

    GMOs (or “genetically modified organisms”) are organisms whose genetic material has been artificially manipulated in a laboratory through genetic engineering. The Non-GMO Project is a certification process that indicates that the product bearing the seal has gone through a verification assuring that a product has been produced according to best practices for GMO avoidance.

  • Is there any nutritional difference between wild-caught and farm-raised fish?

    From both a nutritional and environmental impact perspective, farmed fish is inferior to their wild counterparts. Despite being much fattier, farmed fish provide less usable, beneficial omega-3 fatty acids than do wild fish. Due to the feedlot conditions of aquafarming, farm-raised fish may be doused with antibiotics and exposed to more concentrated pesticides than their wild kin. Farmed salmon, in addition, are given a salmon-colored dye in their feed, without which their flesh would be an unappetizing gray color. Season products are wild caught and bear this marking on the label.

  • How do you eat sardines?

    Sardines are enjoyed in a variety of ways and lend themselves to a number of delicious preparations. The most popular is the traditional sardine sandwich for lunch, or they can be added to a salad or eaten right from the can.

  • What is the shelf life of Season canned fish products?

    The shelf life of Season products can vary depending on whether the product is packed in oil or sauce and the conditions under which the product has been stored. Sardines packed in oil and water have a 5 to 7 year shelf life, those packed in sauces have approximately a 3 to 5 year shelf life.

  • What is the difference between a Herring, Kipper or Sprat?

    A Herring, also known as an older and bigger Sardine, is eaten either pickled and fermented or raw. Now a Kipper, is whole herring that is lightly smoked and split into a butterfly cut. Finally, a Sprat is a Sardine that is smoked for about 3 hours.

  • Why should pregnant women avoid eating some types of fish?

    Some types of fish (shark, swordfish and marlin) contain more mercury than others. The amount of mercury we get from food isn’t harmful for most people, but if a woman takes in high levels of mercury during pregnancy this can affect her baby’s developing nervous system. The FDA recommends that pregnant and breast-feeding women and young children should eat fish that is low in mercury levels to gain important health benefits. Those fish — including salmon, trout, anchovies and sardines — are high in essential omega-3 fatty acids.

  • What does “skinless and boneless” mean in a sardine?

    Season sardines offer a great variety of skinless and boneless sardines. When you see a box that is labeled skinless and boneless it means that the hand packed sardines had the skin and bones removed before they were canned. Skinless and boneless sardines are a great way to enjoy the mild taste and rich texture of sardines – they make a perfect substitute for tuna.

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