St. Patrick’s Day is slowly creeping up, so it’s time for some green food.  And while McDonald’s has the Shamrock Shake, Burger King has the Moldy Whopper (AKA the Krabby Patty that killed the health inspector).

Surprisingly, this isn’t one of those weird gimmick Whoppers like the Angry Whopper or the Whopperito, it really is a Whopper that you can watch a time lapse of as it decomposes, as you contemplate your own mortality.  Goth AF.

The video description boasts that over 400 BK locations will be rolling out preservative-free Whoppers by the end of 2020.  Initially, this seems like an obvious pot-shot at McDonald’s, who has faced some backlash regarding whether or not their food is actually biodegradable.

While this seems like a powerful message with noble intentions on the surface, this stunt does raise some other questions.   

What exactly are they cutting from the Whopper?  One of the most common, and arguably one of the most dangerous preservatives found in fast food is salt, but chances are BK is going to be cutting out some poly-syllabic “Chemicals™” that scare people just because they don’t know what it is or how to pronounce it.  

Why 400 locations?  A quick googling shows BK has over 17,000 locations.  Is the preservative-free Whopper only going to be available in affluent areas where they care about this kind of thing (but aren’t health-conscious enough to not eat at BK?) while the masses still get pumped full of preservatives?  I mean, sure, smaller franchisees who do less business will benefit from the prolonged shelf life, but the coexistence of preserved and unpreserved Whoppers seems like it would only complicate the supply chain.   

Is the Whopper the only menu item getting this treatment?  In culinary school, one of the things we were warned about is putting words like “fresh” in menu descriptions. If you do, then you have two options: put it next to literally every ingredient in every description, or leave customers to wonder, “if only one item is described as “fresh,” what does that make the others?” 

If preserved burgers continue to exist on the menu, are we going to eventually see a scandal similar to the Impossible Burger being cooked on the same grills as the regular burgers, contaminating its integrity?  

Ultimately, it’s just another gimmick to get people to think that fast food companies care about anything other than being fast food.  I doubt it’ll have as much traction as the Impossible Whopper, but we’ll just have to wait and see.   

2 thoughts on “The Moldy Whopper Unfortunately Won’t Be Rotting in a Store Near You

  1. RJG says:

    Agree that this is much to do about nothing.

    I am sure Big Fast Food has put a lot of research money behind offering “healthier” (quotes because “healthy” is super subjective) stuff on their menus, but it’s always seemed silly to me.

    Like the Oreo Thins or whatever attempts Oreo has made to offer healthier stuff.

    If you eat clean 90-95% of the time, indulge in real Oreos or fast food the rest of the time. Instead of trying to eat these junk things every day with the excuse they’ve removed preservatives.

    My understanding is that *preservatives* aren’t the part that makes people fat, anyway.

    1. Riley Johnson says:

      At the end of the day, I’m sure most “healthy” fast-food offerings are just trying to keep up with market demands- regardless of whether or not it is healthier (or if anyone is really being fooled by their claims) they just don’t want to lose sales.

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