Interesting Facts about Fast Food & Fast Food Restaurants

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Food has become a very important part of our life. Every time we are hungry, we look for something tasty and easy to get. The fast-food industry has benefited greatly from this need of ours. If you want to know some interesting facts about fast food & fast food restaurants, read on!

1. White Castle – The First Fast Food Restaurant in the US

White Castle – The First Fast Food Restaurant in the US

The first fast-food restaurant, White Castle, opened in 1921 in Wichita, Kansas, by Walter Anderson. White Castle was known for its mini burgers made from fresh beef patties cooked on a grill instead of being fried like most burger patties were at that time. [1]

2. McDonald’s was bought by Ray Kroc

McDonald’s was bought by Ray Kroc

In 1954, Ray Kroc bought out the original McDonald brothers, who owned a small restaurant in San Bernardino, California, called McDonald’s Barbecue Restaurant, and turned it into a franchise operation with standardized recipes, equipment, and procedures. [2]

3. The First Taco Bell

The First Taco Bell Opened in 1962

The first Taco Bell opened in 1962 as a hot dog stand called Bell’s Drive-Inn in Downey, California, by Glen Bell. It didn’t become Taco Bell until 1975 when Bell renamed his chain after the Mexican food he served at his new restaurant (which he had opened after selling off his original burger joint). [3]

4. Why Most Fast Food Restaurants are Cheap?

Ever Wondered Why Most Fast Food Restaurants are Cheap

Fast food restaurants offer lower prices than other restaurants because they use cheaper ingredients like ground beef instead of steak, processed cheese instead of real cheese, liquid sugar instead of sugar cubes, etc. This way, they can keep their costs low while still making money from their customers.

5. The Story Behind the famous Golden Arches of McDonald’s

The Story Behind the famous Golden Arches of McDonald’s

The distinctive golden arches of McDonald’s were born in 1968 when the original building was flanked by a single arch. After that, architecture became obsolete, and the double-arch M was created and has become world-famous. [1]

6. The Link between Fast Food for Women and Conceiving

The Link between Fast Food for Women and Conceiving

A study found that women who ate fast food regularly were more likely to have a more difficult time getting pregnant than those who did not eat fast food. Eating healthier when you’re not at home can make a big difference for those who want to get pregnant. [3]

7. Fast Food Restaurants and their “Secret Menus”

Fast Food Restaurants and their “Secret Menus”

Fast-food restaurants often have special menu items that are not listed but available if one asks for them. For example, if you ask a Dairy Queen employee for a Coffee Blizzard, they will make it for you even though it is not listed on the menu. If a McDonald’s employee hears someone ask for a grilled cheese sandwich, they will make it for them, too – though it is not on the menu either. [5]

8. The Secret of Happy Meals

The Secret of Happy Meals

A study found that children who received a collectible toy with their meal were twice as likely to choose the food over other options, even when the healthy option was available. [5]

9. The Largest Pizza Franchise in the USA

The Largest Pizza Franchise in the USA

The largest pizza franchise in the USA is Pizza Hut, with 6605 franchises as of 2022. It was founded in 1958 by two brothers, Dan and Frank Carney. The first restaurant was opened in Wichita, Kansas. The early restaurants were mainly drive-in diners with carhops taking orders at the window and delivering them to customers’ cars.

The company used a unique dough preparation technique called “proofing.” This process was developed by an employee named Ike Sewell, who eventually became a co-founder of Pizza Hut. [7]

10. Japanese Eat out at KFC on Christmas as a Tradition

Japanese Eat out at KFC on Christmas as a Tradition

The origin of Christmas dinner at Kentucky Fried Chicken restaurants began in 1974 when the company started marketing a “Kentucky for Christmas” Party Barrel. Since then, it has become an annual tradition in Japan and many other countries. Almost 3.6 million Japanese families eat out at KFC during Christmas season. [8]

11. Fast Food has also Inspired Fashion Industry

Fast Food has also Inspired Fashion Industry

Fast food has inspired all kinds of clothing, including hoodies and tees to Christmas sweaters and pajamas. Most seasonal options are meant for the Christmas season, but some are more suited to summer.

12. The Affordable Care Act

The Affordable Care Act

A provision of the Affordable Care Act signed into law by President Obama requires restaurants to provide calorie counts for menu items. This includes fast-food restaurants. Whether this had any appreciable effect on consumer choices is the subject of some debate.[9]

13. The Biggest and the Richest Fast Food Franchise in the World

The Biggest and Richest Fast Food Franchise in the World

McDonald’s is the world’s most profitable fast-food chain, with a net worth of $178.9 billion in 2022. It made $19.2 billion in 2020, down from $21.8 billion in 2019 due to the rapid expansion of restaurants across the globe. It has over 38,000 locations in over 100 countries. [10]

14. America’s Favorite Fast-Food Chain According to ACSI

America’s Favorite Fast-Food Chain According to ACSI

The American Customer Satisfaction Index (ACSI) Restaurant Report results show that Chick-fil-A has once again been named America’s favorite fast-food chain. McDonald’s came in last. [11]

15. In 2019, Fast Food Restaurants Spent $5 Billion on Advertising

In 2019, Fast Food Restaurants Spent  Billion on Advertising

Fast food restaurants spent around 5 billion dollars on advertising in 2019, which is more than any other category. Fast food restaurants are the largest category of food retailers and have been for decades. In fact, the fast-food industry accounts for 25% of all restaurant sales. [12]

16. Fast-food Meals Have Been Increasing in Calories

Fast-food Meals Have Been Increasing in Calories

Fast-food consumption had increased steadily since the 1960s and 1970s when it first became popular. The average American consumed 2481 calories per day in 2010 and it is 23% times more than in 1970. [13]

17. Fast-food Restaurants Have Become More Prevalent

Fast-food Restaurants Have Become More Prevalent

The number of fast-food restaurants has increased dramatically over time. In 2000, there were only 186,290 quick service restaurants in the US; by 2020, that figure had risen to more than 197,163 outlets in the USA only. [14]

Moreover, there are 603,635 global fast food restaurants businesses in 2022. [15]

18. 37% of American Adults Eat Fast Food Every Day

37% of American Adults Eat Fast Food Every Day

According to a report from the Centers for Disease Control, about a third of the American adult population reports eating fast food at least once daily. This amounts to over 84 million people who eat fast food each day. [13]

19. Your Regular Hamburger Can Contain Meat from 100 Different Cows

Your Regular Hamburger Can Contain Meat from 100 Different Cows

While a steak is typically made from one cut of beef, burger patties are composed of various cuts of beef taken from multiple cows. Even McDonald’s admitted that its hamburgers are made of mixtures of over one hundred cattle. [15]

Conclusion

Fast food has become a part of our everyday lives. And as per the stats, it is here to stay despite what some governments are trying to do to fight health concerns and other social problems related to fast food giant companies.

References

  1. Diamond, A. (2019, June 24). A crispy, salty, American history of fast food. Smithsonian Magazine. https://www.smithsonianmag.com/history/crispy-salty-american-history-fast-food-180972459
  2. Our history. (n.d.). McDonald’s: Burgers, Fries & More. Quality Ingredients. https://www.mcdonalds.com/us/en-us/about-us/our-history.html
  3. Taco Bell. (n.d.). Yum.Com. https://www.yum.com/wps/portal/yumbrands/Yumbrands/company/our-brands/taco-bell
  4. Eating fast food leads to infertility in women and hurts pregnancy. (2022, October 12). Best IVF Center & Fertility Clinic in India | Test Tube Baby, IUI, ICSI Treatment Hospital with Cost | Cloudnine Fertility. https://www.cloudninefertility.com/blog/eating-fast-food-leads-to-infertility-in-women-and-hurts-pregnancy
  5. Crow, S. (2019, January 23). The top-secret menu items you never knew about. Eat This Not That. https://www.eatthis.com/fast-food-secret-menu/
  6. Stuff ‘N’ food: Can collectible toys overcome fascination with fast food?(2011, September 28). News | UW-Madison. https://news.wisc.edu/stuff-n-food-can-collectible-toys-overcome-fascination-with-fast-food/
  7. Pizza Hut. (n.d.). Franchise Opportunities & Franchises for Sale | FranchiseHelp. https://www.franchisehelp.com/franchises/pizza-hut/
  8. Barton, E. (n.d.). Why Japan celebrates Christmas with KFC. BBCpage. https://www.bbc.com/worklife/article/20161216-why-japan-celebrates-christmas-with-kfc?ocid=global_capital_rss&ocid=global_bbccom_email_19122016_capital
  9. Affordable Care Act’s calorie count rules go into effect. (2018, May 7). WREG.com. https://web.archive.org/web/20200730071708/https://wreg.com/news/affordable-care-acts-calorie-count-rules-go-into-effect/
  10. Gravvat, L., & TODAY, U. (2022, July 30). Number of McDonald’s locations in the United States, North America and world in 2022. USA TODAY. https://www.usatoday.com/story/money/business/2022/07/30/how-many-mcdonalds-us-world/10123086002/
  11. America’s favorite fast food chain unchanged for 8th straight year. (2022, June 30). The Hill. https://thehill.com/homenews/nexstar_media_wire/3542966-americas-favorite-fast-food-chain-unchanged-for-8th-straight-year/
  12. Fast food FACTS — Press. (n.d.). Fast Food FACTS — Home. https://www.fastfoodmarketing.org/press.aspx
  13. What’s on your table? How America’s diet has changed over the decades. (2020, May 30). Pew Research Center. https://www.pewresearch.org/fact-tank/2016/12/13/whats-on-your-table-how-americas-diet-has-changed-over-the-decades/
  14. Industry market research, reports, and statistics. (n.d.). IBISWorld – Industry Market Research, Reports, & Statistics. https://www.ibisworld.com/industry-statistics/number-of-businesses/fast-food-restaurants-united-states/
  15. Industry market research, reports, and statistics. (n.d.). IBISWorld – Industry Market Research, Reports, & Statistics. https://www.ibisworld.com/global/number-of-businesses/global-fast-food-restaurants/1480/
  16. Nearly 37 percent of Americans regularly eat fast food, study shows. (2018, December 6). Safety: Safety+Health Magazine. https://www.safetyandhealthmagazine.com/articles/17784-nearly-37-percent-of-americans-regularly-eat-fast-food-study-shows
  17. Gourdeau, C. (2022, May 15). The unexpected number of cows a single burger’s meat could come from. TastingTable.com. https://www.tastingtable.com/863664/the-unexpected-number-of-cows-a-single-burgers-meat-could-come-from

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