Kitchen & Pantry

Canned tuna face off: Century versus San Marino

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I mentioned San Marino tuna once before. More particularly, why we tried it once and never bought another can again. Well, we did. To make a very public comparison. While we prefer Permex tuna, we understand that it isn’t as widely available as Century and San Marino. So, Speedy and I decided to put Century and San Marino side by side and see how they fare.

This is not a paid post. We bought both cans of tuna. Shopwise Antipolo prices: Century Tuna Solid in Water, PHP38.25; San Marino Tuna Fillet in Water, PHP41.75. Despite the difference in label — fillet and solid — we knew that was a mere marketing strategy. Unflavored canned tuna is either solid, chunks or flakes. So, the whole fillets would be the equivalent of “solid”.

So, I’ve told you the price of both items. Let’s go to the net weight. Century, 184 grams; San Marino, 180 grams.

The can of Century Tuna has a pull tab which makes opening a cinch. I had to get my can opener for the San Marino can.

Now, let’s see what’s inside the cans, shall we?

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Remember that Century Tuna is 184 grams while San Marino is 180 grams. But San Marino costs PHP3.50 more than Century Tuna.

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After draining off the brine, the San Marino tuna fillet easily fell into the bowl. I had to use a blunt knife to pry off the contents of the can Century Tuna because the can was really packed with tuna.

Do the contents look like there is a mere four-gram difference?

Even the color of the fish differed. Century tuna was pinkish; San Marino tuna was yellowish.

Again, I repeat, we prefer the Permex brand which has more tuna and is even less expensive than Century.

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If you buy canned tuna on a regular basis, some points to ponder on:

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We all know that celebrity endorsers get paid — sometimes, in millions — to recommend a product. They make their recommendations because they are paid and not necessarily because they actually use the products that they recommend. Moreover, celebrity endorsement is totally unrelated to the actual quality of the product.

Most importantly, how many realize that the retail price of any celebrity-endorsed product is directly affected by the amount of talent fee paid to the celebrity endorser?

My point is that it is wise to try a product once then decide whether it is worth buying again. And that decision should be based on satisfaction or lack of satisfaction — not on whose face you see recommending the product. That is smart consumerism.

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