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eclectic_one
Apr 12th, 2006, 11:12 PM
Fast-Food Fries, Chicken Fattier in U.S. By LINDA A. JOHNSON, Associated Press Writer 49 minutes ago


Order french fries or hot wings at a McDonald's or a KFC in the United States and you're more likely to get a super-sized helping of artery-clogging trans fats than you would be at their restaurants in some other countries.
A study of the fast-food chains' products around the world found remarkably wide variations in trans fat content from country to country, from city to city within the same nation, and from restaurant to restaurant in the same city.
The researchers said the differences had to do with the type of frying oil used, and the main culprit appeared to be partially hydrogenated vegetable oil, which is high in trans fats.
"I was very surprised to see a difference in trans fatty acids in these uniform products," said one of the researchers, Dr. Steen Stender, a cardiologist at Gentofte University Hospital in Hellerup, Denmark, and former head of the Danish Nutrition Council. "It's such an easy risk factor to remove."
McDonald's Corp., which promised in September 2002 to cut trans fat in half, and KFC parent Yum! Brands Inc. said the explanation is local taste preferences. But nutrition experts and consumer activists said it is about money: Frying oil high in trans fats costs less.
The Danish researchers tested products from the chains' outlets in dozens of countries in 2004 and 2005, analyzing McDonald's chicken nuggets, KFC hot wings, and the two chains' fried potatoes. The findings were reported in Thursday's New England Journal of Medicine.
At a New York City McDonald's, a large fries-and-chicken-nuggets combo was found to contain 10.2 grams of the trans fat, compared with 0.33 grams in Denmark and about 3 grams in Spain, Russia and the Czech Republic.
At KFCs in Poland and Hungary, a large hot wings-and-fries order had 19 grams of trans fats or more, versus 5.5 grams for wings and fried potato wedges in New York. But in Germany, Russia, Denmark and Aberdeen, Scotland, the same meal had less than a gram.
A large order of french fries at a New York City McDonald's contained 30 percent more trans fat than the same order from an Atlanta McDonald's.
Partially hydrogenated vegetable oil is cooking oil that has been injected with hydrogen to harden it and give it a longer shelf life. Switching to liquid vegetable oils such as canola, corn, olive or soy eliminates the trans fat, as has been done in Denmark under a 2004 law allowing only a minuscule amount of trans fat in foods.
Trans fat raises bad cholesterol and lowers good cholesterol. Eating just 5 grams of it per day increases the risk of heart disease 25 percent, research shows.
"Per gram, it is more harmful than any other kind of fat," Stender said. "It's a metabolic poison."
McDonald's said it "continues to work diligently on ways to reduce" trans fat in its fries. It said that most of its oils come from local suppliers, based on consumer preference, and that the oil used in the United States is different from that in Europe and elsewhere.
Stender and other experts said many restaurants still use partially hydrogenated vegetable oil to save money because it does not spoil and can be used over and over for frying.
Michael F. Jacobson, executive director of the Center for Science in the Public Interest, said his group has petitioned the Food and Drug Administration to drastically limit the use of trans fats and require restaurant menus to note foods containing trans fat. He said FDA is still reviewing the petitions, "even though they agree it's killing thousands of people a year."
In January, the FDA began requiring package labels to list trans fat content. KFC and McDonald's both list the trans fat and other components of their foods on their Web sites and in stores, on such things as tray liners and brochures.
Jacobsen's center estimated a few years ago that trans fats prematurely killed 30,000 to 75,000 Americans a year. That number has probably fallen, he said, because many packaged-food companies have switched to healthier oils.

But many processed foods including pies, tortilla chips, margarine and microwave popcorn still contain partially hydrogenated vegetable oil.
Harvard School of Public Health cardiologist Dr. Dariush Mozaffarian and colleagues wrote in the journal that while it may be hard for restaurants and food manufacturers to eliminate partially hydrogenated oil, other countries have replaced it with unsaturated fats without raising costs or reducing quality.
Doing so might prevent thousands of heart attacks and strokes each year in the United States, they wrote.
Jacobsen said that the cost might be a penny per order of fries or nuggets, and that the taste difference would be minimal. "I don't think people would mind paying a penny more or getting one less french fry to avoid heart disease," he said.

Tray
Apr 12th, 2006, 11:20 PM
and also McDonals French Fries AREN'T vegan.. they put some beef flavour in them

Mr Flibble
Apr 12th, 2006, 11:39 PM
Can you say which country you are referring to when making such comments? I'm not a fan of McDonalds in any way, shape or form, but to say that they put bovine derived flavourings in the fries sold in all countries where they opperate is simply untrue.

Yoggy
Apr 13th, 2006, 12:26 AM
I know they put beef flavouring in the Canadian ones (at least in Victoria). I was in the mall food court and some boxes of fries were being delivered to the McD's in the food court. I got a look at the ingredients, and something like "beef essence" was listed :eek:

The_Lincoln_Imp
Apr 13th, 2006, 01:24 PM
McDonalds UK website still maintains that fries in the UK are cooked in 100% vegetable oil. Only other additive is the fries are dipped in sugar solution when the potatoes are naturally low in sugar. US ones are still listed as having beef flavouring

I don't think McDonalds, Murder King etc can ever claim anything to be vegan. The amount of contamination that takes place in such a meat heavy environment (virtually a butchers) invalidates that claim.

Besides unless they change the oil everytime that same vegetable oil french fries are cooked in is home to the meat products.

Tray
Apr 13th, 2006, 01:27 PM
Can you say which country you are referring to when making such comments? I'm not a fan of McDonalds in any way, shape or form, but to say that they put bovine derived flavourings in the fries sold in all countries where they opperate is simply untrue.
In switzerland is so... and also I read that in France and Italy is the same.. I think that it's a standard

Kiran
Apr 13th, 2006, 01:44 PM
How long have Mc. Donalds been authorised to use the Vegetarian Society logo? Is it indefinite? It really annoys me.. Vegetarian Society logo with Mc. Donalds!!! :mad: :mad: :mad: :mad: Huh!!!

Mr Flibble
Apr 13th, 2006, 01:50 PM
I don't think McDonalds, Murder King etc can ever claim anything to be vegan. The amount of contamination that takes place in such a meat heavy environment (virtually a butchers) invalidates that claim.

"We ensure that the cooking area for vegetarian products is visibly segregated from the other sections and separate set of equipments is used for cooking them. Our products are cooked under extremely hygienic conditions. What's more - our crew members cooking vegetarian food items are identifiable by their green aprons.
You are most welcome to see for yourself. Just ask any of our senior manager to conduct a kitchen tour for you, your family and your friends.
We at McDonald's have specially developed a range of 100% pure vegetarian food to offer those of you who are vegetarians, a choice. In fact, even the mayonnaise used in the items is eggless. "

McDonalds India (http://www.mcdonaldsindia.com/ourmenu.htm)

puffin
Apr 13th, 2006, 01:52 PM
"We ensure that the cooking area for vegetarian products is visibly segregated from the other sections and separate set of equipments is used for cooking them. Our products are cooked under extremely hygienic conditions. What's more - our crew members cooking vegetarian food items are identifiable by their green aprons.
You are most welcome to see for yourself. Just ask any of our senior manager to conduct a kitchen tour for you, your family and your friends.
We at McDonald's have specially developed a range of 100% pure vegetarian food to offer those of you who are vegetarians, a choice. In fact, even the mayonnaise used in the items is eggless. "

McDonalds India (http://www.mcdonaldsindia.com/ourmenu.htm)
Lol, what veggie is going to trust Mcds :rolleyes:

Mr Flibble
Apr 13th, 2006, 01:57 PM
I'm not sure. Personally I take issue with McDonalds' business practices so wouldn't buy/consume products made by them even if they were vegan, but I don't think they aren't smart or unwilling to adapt for reasons of profit.

If McDonalds see a significant increase in sales/profit can be achieved by doing something then undoubtably they will. If this means preparing vegan food in a seperate environment then as they've done in India or making their fries to a different recipe in the UK as to US then it's a natural progression.

Like most multinationals what you get in one country isn't always that in another. This is why i try to correct people's comments which are country specific about a company's products and either not referenced to which county they are talking about or state (or otherwise infer) that it is globally so. It works both ways: people often post on this forum about products which are vegan in their country only without specifying, which gives misleading advice to others.

Tray
Apr 13th, 2006, 02:00 PM
I'm not sure. Personally I take issue with McDonalds' business practices so wouldn't buy/consume products made by them even if they were vegan, but I don't think they aren't smart. Like most multinationals what you get in one country isn't always that in another. If they see a significant increase in sales/profit can be achieved by doing something then undoubtably they will. If this means preparing vegan food in a seperate environment then as they've done in India or making their fries to a different recipe in the UK as to US then it's a natural progression.
you're right.. McDonalds adapt his menu in each country to the needs of population..
I didn't want to say that they add the "beef flavour" in the french fries all around the world but I think that in general in the westerns McDonalds is so

The_Lincoln_Imp
Apr 13th, 2006, 03:10 PM
"We ensure that the cooking area for vegetarian products is visibly segregated from the other sections and separate set of equipments is used for cooking them. Our products are cooked under extremely hygienic conditions. What's more - our crew members cooking vegetarian food items are identifiable by their green aprons.
You are most welcome to see for yourself. Just ask any of our senior manager to conduct a kitchen tour for you, your family and your friends.
We at McDonald's have specially developed a range of 100% pure vegetarian food to offer those of you who are vegetarians, a choice. In fact, even the mayonnaise used in the items is eggless. "

McDonalds India (http://www.mcdonaldsindia.com/ourmenu.htm)

Also thats just in India I take it. Don't tend to see many green aprons in western branches where the religious need to avoid animal products is less militant. The workers you tend to get in western branches don't strike me as being too interested in hygiene, dietary preferences etc.

eclectic_one
Apr 13th, 2006, 09:40 PM
I don't know if it's true, but I heard it took McDonald's a few months after opening in India to almost non-existent sales of their beef hamburger before they realized that they shouldn't serve beef there:rolleyes:

Jane M
Apr 13th, 2006, 10:12 PM
According to McDonalds site: http://www.mcdonalds.com/app_controller.nutrition.categories.ingredients.in dex.html

Their fries contain "natural flavor (beef, wheat and dairy sources)" that is the USA site though.

I'm developing a fear of anything labeled 'natural'....:eek:

Tigerlily
Apr 13th, 2006, 10:21 PM
Yes, there's beef in Canadian fries as well. I don't think it's a big secret, especially among veg*n circles.

Jane M
Apr 13th, 2006, 10:25 PM
Kind of an interesting link...considering I didn't know McDonalds had a licensed nutritionalist....

http://www.mcdonalds.com/usa/eat/nutritionist.html