Let me not pretend I am something I am not. A bunny hugger I ain’t. According to me, “vegetarian” is from the Latin root that means “bad hunter”. I believe we have dominion over the animals, and I love steak. But, being a meat lover/eater (don’t worry, the red meat animals get their revenge on me, I suffer from terrible gout!) does not mean that I turn a blind eye to the rights of animals. While you won’t find me picketing the fashion stores or butcheries, a fast food store had my stomach turning this week.
Heading back to my home office earlier this week, I realized my schedule was tight. Now, I am living a healthier lifestyle than in the past, and have lost almost 15Kg’s of weight during the last year. Meaning that I actually try and make healthier eating choices. It dawned on me that a quick, fast food bite, preferably of the drive through variety would suit my schedule best. Faced with a number of bad choices, I opted for what seemed to be the lesser of a number of evils, and opted for something chickenish. Calling it “chicken” would be an absolute travesty… Now, this particular three letter acronym chain has not seen business from me in a long time, and I opted for a burger and a drink. Imagine my shock and surprise at the “fishy” smell and flavour, with something “chemical” lingering… Can it really be, have we as consumers fallen so far of the top of the food chain that this almost toxic, smelly blend of deep fried whatchamacalit passes as food in our world? One bit was enough to leave me reeling. Did I have a singular bad experience at a bad restaurant, cathing them off guard, or is this the quality and taste consumers crave nowadays?
Reason why this brand was top of mind this week, is that one of my family members doing his articles to qualify as a Chartered Accounted recalled the vast amounts of money these businesses generate. Forget about shoving your morals aside and opting to buy a franchise for pure monetary gain. You cannot buy one even if you had the money. A few companies now control the franchise ownership and new stores are allocated to these companies using some method, about I will best not speculate, lest I find a horse’s head in my bed.
Driving past these shops around meal times, you find them stuffed to the brim with customers, cash in hand and a row of cars around the building, waiting to be served. Is their marketing really that good, or are we really that oblivious and stupid? And they are not the only brand whose food I cannot stomach. A clown themed one is right up there too. What they pass off as a burger patty in a country that rears some of the best beef in the world is unfathomable. Despite this, I have a friend who confesses an almost drug like craving for their offerings. While his wife has him on every weird diet based around hormones, pills, injections and flab busting machines, he enjoys nothing more than cheating on that diet with a sneaky double burger with “cheese”. Calling the yellow goob slab on said chemically enhanced patty “cheese” is an insult to the bacteria that make the actual process of producing cheese possible.
Reading all the horror stories about these brands on the web, for a long time I dismissed these as pure disgruntled, ex-burger flippin’ employees with a vendetta hogwash. I did not see the fire where the smoke was. After sampling their wares, heed my warning, there is a fire raging…