Fast Food Advertising – Too Good To Be True

By: Parth Mukhi

Have you ever just stared at your fast food meal and thought, “Wow, this is not at all what I was expecting.” When you go to order fast food, you look at the displays they have outside their store. You gaze back at the large, bold font words entrapping your attention. “Succulent”, “Tender”, “Delicious”, is what they say. To top it all off, the food in the picture’s always look even better than the words can describe. All that anticipation & excitement comes crashing down when the cashier hands you the food, you unwrap it, and you see mushed up pile of bread-meat-bread.

How do McDonald’s, Subway, Wendy’s, Taco Bell do this? In the same manner that film companies put their actors & actresses through hours of make up to get them perfect for the screen, these food companies go through extensive preparation for the advertisement of their food. Burgers, tacos, and salads all go through a photo shoot where they are touched up to look like the perfect product.

The food itself is prepared at the studio. From there, the food stylists take over. For burgers, they’ll push all the main ingredients to the foreground, making them standout. Cheese & patty are steamed to make them seem more appetizing. Following this, skewers are placed in the burgers to keep everything in an attractive, upright position. Subway sandwiches always look much more bulky in the commercials because the studios will add cardboard or foam in between the layers. Fast food salads will never look like they do in the ads, and have never tasted like an normal salad should. In order to give them that fresh & tasty look, they are sprayed with a bottle of glycerin. Finally, all the food is fixed up with photoshop, to enhance every last detail.

Company respond to these claims by saying that the food moves, or that the packaging & backing may cause for the food to be squashed. Though the companies are including everything in the burger that they claimed would be there, people still preach false advertising is in play. Technically, these companies are doing nothing legally wrong, and day after day people go back to these fast food restaurants and buy their food. At the end of the day, false advertising can be shouted from the mountain tops, but will it ever effect whether people decide to go out and buy fast food?

DailyFoodtoEat is the official blog of FoodtoEat, a sustainable online food ordering and concierge catering service featuring your favorite restaurants, food trucks and caterers. Check out the deliciousness here: www.foodtoeat.com

New York City Fast Food Workers Strike for Better Pay

Workers at Burger King, McDonald’s and Wendy’s have gone on strike in New York City in protest of their low wages and their trouble starting a union to organize and demand their rights. These strikes follow closely after the nationwide strikes at Walmart, which has notoriously prevented its workers from unionizing and increasing their wages.

Workers began striking Thursday, protesting outside a Burger King near Penn Station standing behind a metal barricade with union organizers, clergy and other fast food workers. Inside the restaurant there were two customers, a security guard and a few cashiers. Customers have mostly avoided the chaos, and protestors hope to change the structure of the fast food industry where workers typically drift between jobs without much room for growth.

The strikes may be due to changing demographics among fast food workers, where teenagers working part-time jobs have been replaced with laid off workers, parents and families looking to support themselves. Organizers from New York Communities for Change helped coordinate protests among fast food workers.

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“Especially now after the recession, a lot of people who lost work are now taking these jobs. Our economy is becoming a service sector economy but most of these jobs are minimum wage. This is a huge problem”, said Jonathan Westin, organizing director at New York Communities for Change.

The workers are specifically requesting the ability to form unions and to be paid at least $15 an hour. Fast food workers make approximately $8.90 an hour, which is the lowest of any occupation. These workers usually move to other jobs instead of demanding raises at their current ones, and the franchises that own each fast food establishment actively block attempts at unionization.

The event organizers have not been completely clear about their plans to unionize workers, but they intend to change standards across the whole industry rather than just at individual franchises. Despite the striking employees, franchise owners will most likely continue to pay workers on a store-by-store basis across New York.

DailyFoodtoEat is the official blog of FoodtoEat, a sustainable online food ordering and concierge catering service featuring your favorite restaurants, food trucks and caterers. Check out the deliciousness here: www.foodtoeat.com

 

Burger King Offers Intimidating Buffet in Japan

Burger King Japan has made plenty of headlines with its adventurous additions to the fast food market earlier this year. Fast food chains in Japan have fought a recent marketing war, resulting in some truly strange creations. Burger King’s New York Pizza Burger, McDonalds’ Mega Tomago with egg and bacon and the Lobster Surf and Turf Burger from Wendy’s are just a few examples of these innovative fast food items. Now Burger King seems to have taken the lead with new creations, offering a Pumpkin Burger, Black Bun Burger and Five-Patty Whopper.

Now Japan’s Burger King Restaurants are setting up a promotion in honor of their fifth anniversary; an all-you-can-eat burger buffet. Customers have the opportunity to devour as many hamburgers, fries or onion rings as possible in the thirty minutes allotted to each person.

This buffet is called “B’iKing”, meant to be a play on words for the Japanese word for Burger King and the word “Viking”, which means all-you-can-eat buffet. Anyone planning on taking a trip to Japan in the next few days should try to fit this once-in-a-lifetime buffet into their schedule. The special runs from November 17th until November 21st for black bun burgers, and November 22nd until November 30th for Whoppers.

DailyFoodtoEat is the official blog of FoodtoEat, a sustainable online food ordering and concierge catering service featuring your favorite restaurants, food trucks and caterers. Check out the deliciousness here: www.foodtoeat.com

 

McDonald’s Posts Calorie Content

Many New Yorker’s are already accustomed to the mandatory calorie information they see posted at McDonald’s restaurants throughout the city, now the chain is posting this information at all of its locations nationwide. Starting Monday the chain will post calorie information on restaurant and drive-thru menus, working to voluntarily post this information before a regulation is passed that would mandate restaurants to post this information nationwide.

McDonald’s already posts calories information in New York, Philadelphia, Australia, South Korea and the United Kingdom. They hope to soon post this information in South America as well. “We want to voluntarily do this,” said Jan Fields, president of McDonald’s USA. “We believe it will help educate customers. When it’s all said and done, the menu mix doesn’t change. But I do think people feel better knowing this information.”

This move comes as a preemptive response to the Supreme Court’s decision to approve President Obama’s healthcare changes. In these changes one regulation requires that restaurant chains with over 20 locations must post the calorie content of their food. While restaurants still have time to sort out their menus before the law comes into play, few other chains have responded so readily. Wendy’s has yet to make a response, Burger King and Yum Brands (the owner of KFC and Taco Bell) said that they are waiting for more information before they proceed.

The ultimate goal of posting calorie information at these restaurants is to raise awareness about what we eat. “Obesity isn’t the kind of thing where one day you wake up and you’re fat. We gradually and slowly gain weight over time,” said Margo Wootan, director of nutrition at the Center for Science in the Public Interest. Wootan believes that this move could have a large effect over time, and could help sway some people to make better choices with what they eat.

Regulators are also hoping that restaurant chains will make an extra effort to provide healthier food after seeing the calorie content publicly posted. “It can be embarrassing, or shocking, so they end up changing the way the product is made,” Wootan said.

McDonald’s is already testing some healthier options, like the Egg White Delight, an Egg McMuffin with egg white, Canadian bacon and white cheddar cheese on a whole grain muffin, clocking in at 260 calories. New McWraps are being tested as well, ranging from 350 to 580 calories. This is a stark contrast to a Big Mac meal, which would amount to about 1,140 calories. McDonald’s faces strong competition from chains like Subway that market themselves as healthy alternatives to fast food.

McDonald’s efforts to get ahead of the game by posting calorie content voluntarily may simply be a savvy public relations move however. Corporate Accountability International is a group that has previously urged McDonald’s to stop marketing food to children. They say that McDonald’s has attempted to stop similar regulations in the past, and their latest move was certainly not voluntary. While the chain instituted a rule earlier this year that automatically includes apple slices in Happy Meals, Sara Deon from Corporate Accountability International said that it was nothing but a “PR scheme designed to drive traffic to stores to sell burgers and fries.”

DailyFoodtoEat is the official blog of FoodtoEat, a sustainable online food ordering and concierge catering service featuring your favorite restaurants, food trucks and caterers. Check out the deliciousness here: www.foodtoeat.com

 

New Study Pays $3500 to Eat Fast Food for 3 Months

Washington University in St. Louis is conducting a study on obesity, asking participants to take part in it with a hefty bribe to destroy their bodies for a mere three months.

The school is offering participants the opportunity to eat all the fast food they want for three months, and in return receive $3,500 for their trouble. During the course of the study participants have to gain five percent of their body weight during the duration of the study.

Dr Sam Klein has organized the study, and sees fast food as a necessary means to measure weight gain. “By choosing fast foods, we can regulate that food intake much better than trying to tell people to try and decide on their own eating food at home, which require judgment and education on what you’re eating. By going to eat fast food, we know exactly what they’re eating.”

The study aims to differentiate why some overweight people develop diabetes and other cardiovascular risk factors, while others do not.

In order to take part in the study, participants must be between 18 and 65 years old, non-smokers, non-diabetic and already be at least thirty pounds overweight. After the study culminates in three months, participants will be entered into a weight loss program to lose it.

The study allows participants to eat from the following list of fast food restaurants. To sign up for the study click here.

– McDonald’s
– Taco Bell
– KFC
– Burger King
– Pizza Hut

DailyFoodtoEat is the official blog of FoodtoEat, a sustainable online food ordering and concierge catering service featuring your favorite restaurants, food trucks and caterers. Check out the deliciousness here: www.foodtoeat.com

 

New BK Bacon Sundae is the Real Deal

Just a few weeks ago it was announced that Wendy’s had surpassed Burger King in sales, making Burger King the number three fast food chain behind Wendy’s and McDonald’s. Burger King has responded by releasing several new menu items that aren’t often seen at fast food establishments, like Pulled Pork BBQ Sandwiches, Frozen Lemonades, Sweet Potato Fries and even a new Bacon Sundae.

Bacon has seen a tremendous spike in popularity, but Burger King seems to be getting into the bacon game a little later than many other chains. Jack in the Box even debuted its own bacon dessert, a bacon milkshake, though reception on this particular item was not very positive. Burger King’s sundae will feature real pieces of bacon in it, and has already appeared on a menu at a Nashville, Tennessee Burger King.

At this time Burger King confirms that it has no plans to release the sundae nationwide, and is currently testing menu items at various locations. According to food blog grubgrade.com, “all in all, the BK Bacon Sundae was everything I had hoped it would be, and nothing that I had feared: The bacon stayed crispy throughout, and its smokiness and saltiness powered through even when there was a lot of chocolate and caramel on the spoon.”

Until Burger King decides to expand the Bacon Sundae to more locations, we’ll just have to take their word on how it tastes. While we’re waiting though, the Bacon Milkshake from jack in the Box and the new Hot-Dog Stuffed Crust Pizza from Pizza Hut will have to suffice.

DailyFoodtoEat is the official blog of FoodtoEat, a sustainable online food ordering and concierge catering service featuring your favorite restaurants, food trucks and caterers. Check out the deliciousness here: www.foodtoeat.com