Fast Food Facts

We’ve spent some time and effort — and utilized the expertise of Kathy here at the TomKat Ranch — to try and improve the local school meal program. ¬†And we’re proud to say we’ve achieved this with great success. But assuring kids are eating properly goes way beyond the doors of the local school system. And that got us thinking, “What if we offered helpful online information and resources for parents taking the nutritional lead from there?” After all, the fast food industry spent a staggering $4.2 billion on marketing campaigns targeting, in part, our children.

In that spirit, we suggest taking a peak at fastfoodmarketing.org. Focused on the marketing strategies of fast food companies. Their website – Fast Food Facts, offers tips on what to watch for, other useful statistical information and fast food nutritional facts. Such as:

Fast food companies speak to children early, often, and when parents are not looking.

- Nutritional Quality of Kids Meals where they rank possible kid’s meal combinations from best to worse. Subway’s Veggie Delight sandwich combined with apple slices and 100% real juice is ranked #1 for it’s low calorie and low sugar intake. Where KFC’s combination of Popcorn chicken, Biscuit, sweetened soft drink, and string cheese lists dead last with a whopping 840 calories and 1,610 mgs of sodium per meal.

- An interesting overview of fast food company websites where you can find out how, and how many, websites and banner ads are targeted to children. Did you know that McDonald’s HappyMeal.com (yes, that Happy Meal recently banned by the San Francisco Board of Supervisors) gets an estimated 248,000 youth hits per month?

At the very least, fastfoodmarketing.org might help you understand why your children are pleading with you to stop at that fast food joint every time you pass it. And given recent studies show sugar, fat and salt-laden foods can be highly addictive, an ounce of preventative information is worth a pound of future health issues.

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