The Neatest Little Paper Ever Read ®

Issue 974



by Kathy Wolfe

Fast food is just that – easy and convenient. Good or bad? Tidbits brings the facts and lets you decide!

• If you’re an average American, you’ll spend about $1,200 on fast food this year. About 50 million Americans will eat fast food in the U.S. today, contributing to the industry’s annual total of $117 billion, more than the annual amount spent on movies, books, music, and newspapers combined. An estimated 20-25% of Americans eat fast food at least once a week.

• Fast food is nothing new. In fact, in ancient Rome, bread, sausages, and wine were sold at stands on the side of the road. Fast food really took off beginning in the nineteenth century when fish and chips stands started up in Great Britain. A commemorative plaque in the community of Oldham in Manchester, England, honors the origin of that fast food industry there in 1860. By 1910, The United Kingdom boasted more than 25,000 fish and chips shops.

• Merriam-Webster first included the term “fast food” in its dictionary in 1951.

• Based on Subway’s menu choices of meats, breads, salads, and toppings, there are nearly 38 million possible combinations for lunch.

• McDonald’s is the most valuable fast food brand in the world, but it’s not the one with the most restaurants. There are about 36,000 McDonald’s restaurants worldwide, but Subway has close to 45,000 eateries. McDonald’s is the largest purchaser of beef, pork, and potatoes in the nation. McDonald’s fries make up 7.5% of the U.S. entire potato crop. Surprisingly, as one of the world’s largest owners of real estate, McDonald’s holdings earn the corporation more profits from rent than from selling food. And the inclusion of toys in Happy Meals has earned the chain the distinction of world’s largest toy distributor.

• According to McDonald’s, one of their burgers can contain parts of more than 100 cows.

• So is that really chicken in your chicken nuggets? It seems so, but not the parts you might expect. A medical study revealed that the content is not much meat, and more bones, fat, and tendons. That didn’t bother Jamaican Olympic sprinter Usain Bolt, who ate 1,000 chicken nuggets during his time at the 2008 Beijing Olympics. His love of nuggets hasn’t affected his achievement of nine Olympic medals.

• Recommended daily fat intake is between 44 and 66 grams per day. Carl Jr.’s Double Six hamburger delivers 111 grams of fat.


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