Burger King's "Fresh" Take On All Natural

We have all heard the story of the child who leaves his hamburger in the backseat of his mom’s car only to find it a month later in pristine condition. Well, that won’t happen with a Burger King whopper; so, don’t leave it in the backseat!

Burger King is making a big splash after breaking all the rules in the realm of advertising with its newest commercial showing a thirty-four day time lapse of a molding whopper. While the spot is naturally disgusting, it is also reassuring. The message behind the ad reads “the beauty of no artificial preservatives.” Perhaps the reason it came as such a surprise is simply because we are not used to this type of honesty. Food advertising is supposed to be appetizing, not disgusting right?

While Burger King may have flipped the script in terms of display, this seems to be a trend in fast-food chains over the last decade. There has been a shift from wanting the best deals to wanting the best ingredients and the fast food industry is, somewhat, listening. As examples, we at TXADPR took a look at three popular chains: Taco Bell, Subway, and McDonald’s.

In 2015, Taco Bell pledged to remove all artificial flavorings and colorings by the end of year and remove all preservatives “where possible” by 2017. However, a change in some of the menu items, like the Doritos Locos Tacos, would have required a change in the Frito Lay supply chain. Don’t be fooled. Those red and blue tacos are not “all natural.”

In 2017, Subway announced it would eliminate all artificial flavors, colors, and preservatives from the menu over the next 18 months. Their announcement leads us to question how accurate the tagline “eat fresh” was prior to 2017.

In 2018, McDonald’s announced its almost, “all natural” burgers which claimed to remove all artificial flavors and ingredients from the classic lineup except the pickles. However, according to the president of McDonalds’ USA Chris Kempczinski,  “customers can skip it.” Thanks for the heads up, Chris!

It is important for consumers and advertisers to know that “all natural” does not have to mean organic. “All natural” can simply refer to the exclusion of certain chemicals, like azodicarbonamide, in foods like bread. For those who are unaware of this term, feel free to google the materials and products that make up a yoga mat. 

Still, hats off to Burger King! The ad is a “fresh” way of introducing its new line of all natural whoppers and we at TXADPR enjoy the honesty. 

Don’t forget to let us know what you think! Does this ad change your view on Burger King? What about fast food restaurants in general?

Jack Eltife