Study: Subway’s chicken only contains 50 percent chicken DNA

(WSVN) - The chicken in your Subway sandwich may be lacking in the, um, chicken department.

According to a new study by the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation, the sandwich chain’s chicken meat contains only about 50 percent chicken DNA.

The CBC tested chicken from several fast food chains in collaboration with researchers at Trent University’s Wildlife Forensic DNA Laboratory. They also tested chicken from McDonald’s, Wendy’s, A&W, and Tim Hortons.

Researchers said that, while chicken purchased from a supermarket or butcher should test at 100 percent DNA, meat that has been seasoned, marinated, fried, or otherwise prepared is expected to register at a lower percentage.

Most of the scores from the restaurants tested were in the 85 to 90 percent range for chicken DNA… except at Subway.

Subway’s oven roasted chicken scored 53.6 percent, while their Sweet Onion Chicken Teriyaki strips scored even lower at 42.8 percent chicken DNA.

“Subway’s results were such an outlier that the team decided to test them again, biopsying five new oven roasted chicken pieces, and five new orders of chicken strips,” CBC News said.

So what is in the other 50 percent of the meat, if it isn’t chicken? The lab said it’s soy, a common filler.

Subway claims they use only 100 percent white meat chicken, but admit they use soy as a stabilizer.

The CBC reached out to Subway for comment. The chain issued a statement, saying they “cannot confirm the veracity of the results of the lab testing.”

“However, we are concerned by the alleged findings you cite with respect to the proportion of soy content,” Subway’s statement to the CBC said. “Our chicken strips and oven roasted chicken contain 1% or less of soy protein. We use this ingredient in these products as a means to help stabilize the texture and moisture.”

The statement continued, “We will look into this again with our supplier to ensure that the chicken is meeting the high standard we set for all of our menu items and ingredients.”

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