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12 Biggest Secrets Fast Food Chains Keep Hidden From The Public

It's said that we are what we eat, but what we eat is not always the thing we assume it to be. Your favorite fast food chains like McDonald's have held out on these biggest secrets, which offer food for thought.

1. McDonald's Fries Aren't Vegetarian Yet

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If you plan to go vegetarian, then don't try McDonald's fries, unless you are in India. Back in 2002, the fast food chain was sued for mislabeling fries and hash browns as vegetarian. The truth is that they prepare them with an oil flavored with essence of beef. Interestingly, they switched from lard to vegetable oil once before, however, the taste of the fries didn’t go down well. As a result, they switched back to the beef flavored recipe. 

2. Domino's Pizza Tracker Has You Fooled

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You may find your heart beats faster when you check the pizza tracker after you order a pizza. However, it will sadly disappoint you, because it is not trustworthy. It reflects ideal timings and employees are prone to tricking the system with fake accounts. If you doubt that, stake out your localDominos to uncover the truth.

3. Most Coffee Cups Still Are Non-Recyclable

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In 2008, the BBC estimated that over 99 percent of coffee cups weren't recyclable. Despite the fact that chains like Starbucks have claimed to be replacing their plastic straws with paper ones, it turns out they are not recyclable, either. Making a paper cup capable of holding up a hot beverage at a cost low enough for mass production is no picnic. So far most industries haven't been competent enough to separate the paper from the plastic lining, and they still have a long way to go. 

4. Stay Alert In Case You Are Overcharged By McDonald's

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Most people don't check their receipts at McDonald's and barely notice the prices printed on the menu. So it’s quite easy not to notice that the Extra Value Meal actually costs more than purchasing the items separately. Though a court ruling said it wasn't deceptive advertising, you can do the math in advance.

5. Panera Bread's Food Isn't That Fresh

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If you think Panera Bread's food is fresher than that typically sitting under the warmer, then you are wrong. In fact, most cooking is not done on-site, according to two former employees. Foods like bread dough, cupcakes, mac and cheese, and soup come frozen, then are thawed and heated up at the store. Even salad and sandwich toppings arrive frozen. Quite disturbing, right?   

6. Colonel Sanders Detested KFC

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Colonel Sanders, the founder of "Kentucky Fried Chicken", hated KFC, so what gives? He sold his firm in 1964, and when the company changed the gravy, it resulted in a huge controversy. The Colonel's gravy was pretty palatable. However, it was also costly and time-consuming. Sanders called the new gravy "wallpaper paste" and was sued by the corporation for libel. 

7. Taco Bell Stole That Adorable Yet Offensive Chihuahua

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Remember Taco Bell's mascot, that adorable chihuahua? Well, plenty of lawsuits centered around him. Joseph Shields and Thomas Rinks, the original creators of the ad campaign, appealed against Taco Bell's breach of the contract. Ultimately, they won the lawsuit. The story didn't come out until Taco Bell hit back at the ad agency, and it resulted in them paying another $12 million. 

8. Starbucks Isn't Fair Trade-friendly To Everyone

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Starbucks has publicized itself as a fair trade-friendly company that supports farmers. Yet in 2006, it was sued for blocking farmers' from trademarking their coffee beans. Eventually, Starbucks admitted the legitimacy of the names and tarnished their reputation in the process.

9. The Reason Why Fast Food Chains Call It "Soft Serve"

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If you ever keep an eye on the menu of those fast food restaurants like Dairy Queen, you may wonder about the congruity of one specific term: soft serve. The truth is that ice cream is specified by the FDA as a product that contains at least 10 percent milkfat. Products such as Blizzards, sundaes and cones have only 5 percent milkfat. The same goes for McDonald's ice-cream. 

10. The Big Problems With McDonald's Machines

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McDonald's milkshake and McFlurry machines are often down, and The Wall Street Journal found it takes four hours and 11 steps to complete a cleaning cycle. Since the process is so complicated, they are not cleaned regularly. Once a former employee posted photos of a filthy drip tray from a machine and got laid off. However, McDonald's claimed that the part had no direct contact with food. 

11. KFC's Secret Recipe

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KFC's top secret is their eleven-herb-and-spice recipe, and Colonel Sanders' nephew may have accidentally stumbled across it when he looked at the will of Sanders' second wife. The ingredients were written on the back and read mix 2 cups white flour with ⅔ Ts salt, ½ Ts thyme, ½ Ts basil, ⅓ Ts oregano, 1 Ts celery salt, 1 Ts black pepper, 1 Ts dried mustard, 4 Ts paprika, 2 Ts garlic salt, 1 Ts ground ginger, 3 Ts white pepper. 

12. Chipotle's Guarantee Of A Fair Wage For Tomato-Pickers

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Considering the quantity of tomatoes Chipotle sources from Florida, it was asked to join the Fair Food Program held by the Coalition of Immokalee Workers in 2006. However, Chiptole didn't sign it until a protest held in 2012, because the deal regulated the chain to get tomatoes from CIW-supported workers.

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