Photos of a trial in a fast food restaurant — Quartz

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Expectations from Wendy’s Bourbon Bacon Cheeseburger.



Reality from Wendy’s Bourbon Bacon Cheeseburger.

They are the same, according to Wendy’s.

A 35-page class action lawsuit, filed in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of New York, alleges Wendy’s exaggerates the thickness of its beef patties and the amount of burger toppings it uses in its advertisements. He also alleges that McDonald’s uses undercooked patties in advertisements to make them look bigger than they are. The lawsuit cites a McDonald’s ad in which the beef patty extends to the edge of the bun, comparing it to the actual burger where it does not.

The beef patties in the ads are not fully cooked, making the burgers appear about 15-20% larger than those served to customers, the lawsuit says.

The lawsuit says many reviewers criticized Wendy’s for serving smaller items than advertised, with one review of Wendy’s Dave’s Single burger saying “…it’s worth a dollar…it’s not a five dollar burger.”

It’s not so surprising that fast food advertisements depict burgers and fries in an idealized way. But a look at the trial images depicting the promised item versus the reality of fast food may be the strongest argument that in this case at least, there is no truth to the advertisement.

The legality of food advertising

This isn’t the first lawsuit accusing restaurants of misleading customers with advertising. In March, a class action lawsuit was filed against Burger King in federal court in Florida, alleging the fast-food giant inflated the size of its burgers by 35% in advertisements. There have also been lawsuits over the lack of real strawberries in Strawberry Pop-Tarts, the fudge in Keebler cookies, and where the vanilla flavoring in A&W Root Beer came from.

With respect to the legality of restaurant advertising, customers seeing that food looks different in person than in an advertisement would not cause the same regulatory concern as a claim that a product may reduce disease risk. , for example, Federal Trade Commission spokeswoman Betsy Lordan told CNBC in 2014.

In an interview with NPR, Bonnie Patten, executive director of a consumer advocacy group, said these lawsuits usually end. with a judge dismissing the case or with a settlement agreement. In other words, companies often get away with not changing much. The settlement can also be lucrative for the plaintiff’s attorney, who typically pays between a quarter and a third, she added.

It is not uncommon to see fake food

The lawsuit also alleges that McDonald’s and Wendy’s food stylists said they cheated on customers.

Food styling is big business, and using undercooked meat in commercials is just one of the tricks stylists use to make food look better. But as food trends have shifted toward a more natural look, the hype has been toned down, Fast Company wrote. The food style is also convenient and designed to store food meant to sit for long hours under hot lights. The lawsuit mentions a food stylist who prefers to use undercooked patties because “[t]hat guarantees a big, plump patty, whereas fully cooked burgers tend to shrink and look less appetizing.

About Walter Bartholomew

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