Subway continues to be in the hot seat after another bad press release recently published by the New York Times.
Earlier this week, the Times conducted a lab analysis centered around the fast-food franchise’s tuna sandwich. After ordering “60 inches worth of Subway tuna sandwiches” from three different locations in Los Angeles, the study found that the sandwiches didn’t contain tuna DNA or a species that could be identified from the samples provided.
“No amplifiable tuna DNA was present in the sample and so we obtained no amplification products from the DNA,” the report read. “Therefore, we cannot identify the species.” The study followed a lawsuit that was filed months ago against Subway. The suit accused the company of using “a mixture of various concoctions that do not constitute tuna.” The claims were supported by independent lab tests that suggested the mysterious ingredients are “blended together” in an effort to “imitate” the appearance of tuna, Complex reported.
However, a similar study conducted by Inside Edition tested sandwiches from three locations in New York City and found that those samples contained tuna.
Apparently, there are several possible reasons why there was no tuna DNA present in the tested samples.
“There’s two conclusions. One, it’s so heavily processed that whatever we could pull out, we couldn’t make an identification,” a lab spokesperson explained. “Or we got some and there’s just nothing there that’s tuna.”
Another fish expert suggested that the sample was difficult to test because the protein may have broken down after being cooked.
But Subway made sure to step forward to defend itself by questioning the validity of the DNA testing while also sticking to the aforementioned fish expert’s explanation.
“A recent New York Times report indicates that DNA testing is an unreliable methodology for identifying processed tuna. This report supports and reflects the position that Subway has taken in relation to a meritless lawsuit filed in California and with respect to DNA testing as a means to identify cooked proteins,” the statement reads, per Business Insider. “DNA testing is simply not a reliable way to identify denatured proteins, like Subway’s tuna, which was cooked before it was tested.”
“Unfortunately, various media outlets have confused the inability of DNA testing to confirm a specific protein with a determination that the protein is not present,” the statement added. “The testing that the New York Times report references does not show that there is not tuna in Subway’s tuna. All it says is that the testing could not confirm tuna, which is what one would expect from a DNA test of denatured proteins.”
The chain assures that its Tuna is “100% wild-caught, cooked tuna.”