Is Burger King safe to eat? (safety practices)
In this article, we will discuss the safety of eating Burger King products, the health risks associated with the consumption of Burger King, and what are the practices that Burger King follows regarding food safety.
A food safety issue was reported related to the possible contamination of the hamburger meat of one of the beef suppliers of Burger King in 1997, which led to a concern about the safety of its products.
However, according to recent data, Burger King follows safe food practices.
Is Burger King safe to eat?
Yes, Burger King is safe to eat. According to study reports, the employees from Burger King are trained to keep hygiene control and cleanliness of the environment and must follow good hygienic practices.
The Company applies the HACCP (Hazard Analysis by Critical Control Point) (3) management tool as well as external audits to ensure and improve the safety and quality of its products (1).
A food safety issue was reported due to a possible contamination of beef hamburgers from one of the main beef suppliers of Burger King Company in 1997 (2), which led to concerns over the safety of its products.
However, the Company ensures the accurate supervision of its practices and states that periodic auditions are realised in the stores and the slaughter places to improve the controlled safety over all the production steps made (1, 4, 5).
What are the possible risks of consuming Burger King?
The possible risks of consuming Burger King are related to foodborne illnesses. Several food outbreaks have been reported related to the consumption of fast food products, especially related to hamburgers (2, 6).
Beef is a vehicle food for many pathogenic bacteria, including Escherichia coli and Salmonella. The serving of undercooked beef hamburgers is not unusual in fast food restaurants (6), which can lead to episodes of infections and poisoning.
However, by following proper cooking practices and hygienic handling of the food ingredients, such risks are minimised.
According to the Vice President of Food Safety Issues of Restaurant Brands International, of which Burger King is part, Diego Beamonte, Burger King follows safety guidelines to maximise the safety and the quality of its products (5).
Is Burger King healthy?
Yes, Burger King may be healthy if consumed in moderation. However, due to the high energy load, and the high amount of sugars, sodium and fats in fast food products, Burger King is associated with an unhealthy diet.
The consumption of fast food products is related to higher risks of developing metabolic diseases, such as obesity and type-2 diabetes (7).
Although Burger King may offer healthier options, such as salads, fruits and yoghurts, the option of healthier items has been a challenging issue for the Food Company (1).
Is Burger King safe for allergic individuals?
No, Burger King is not always safe for allergic individuals. Although the employees are trained to improve food safety in terms of allergens in foods and minimise the risk of cross-contamination, Burger King products may contain allergens (5, 8).
According to the Company, allergic individuals should look for medical advice before consuming Burger King products, as allergens can be present in the food as a result of the preparation practices.
For instance, the same fryer is used to prepare fish patties and chicken nuggets and allergens of fish can migrate to the chicken nuggets as a result of this share (8).
Burger King provides a list of the possible presence of allergens in its ingredients. If you are allergic to a known food, consult the restaurant and inform yourself before consuming the products.
What are the safety practices of Burger King?
The main safety practices of Burger King are the following (1, 3, 5):
- Following the HACCP control tool to analyse possible critical points and failures and to correct unsafe practices to reduce risks
- Training of the employees to follow improved cleaning and hygienic practices
- Improved control over the ingredients used in the restaurant
- Periodical internal and external audits of the safety and quality of the restaurants and animal slaughterplaces
- Correct storage of the products
- Transparency over the practices of the Company
By following these practices, the risks of food outbreaks due to the consumption of Burger King product is minimised, resulting in a higher reliability of the Company.
In this article, we discussed whether Burger King is safe to eat, the safety practices of the fast food Company, and the possible risks of consuming fast food products.
Burger King was involved in possible beef contamination in the past, however, recent sources and data affirm the improved safety of its products. Consuming fast food products may be unhealthy if done in excess.
Was this helpful?
Patrone SS. Burger King in Portugal: To Lead Or To Follow? (Doctoral dissertation, Universidade Catolica Portugesa (Portugal)).
Sellnow T, Sarabakhsh M. Crisis management in the hospitality industry. Hospitality Review. 1999;17(1):6.
Ropkins K, Beck AJ. Evaluation of worldwide approaches to the use of HACCP to control food safety. Trends in Food Science & Technology. 2000 Jan 1;11(1):10-21.
Grandin T. Special Report: Maintenance of good animal welfare standards in beef slaughter plants by use of auditing programs. Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association. 2005;226:370-3.
Food safety [Internet]. Rbi.com. [cited 2023 Oct 19]. Available from: https://www.rbi.com/English/sustainability/food-safety/default.aspx
O’Brien AD, Melton AR, Schmitt CK, McKee ML, Batts ML, Griffin DE. Profile of Escherichia coli O157: H7 pathogen responsible for hamburger-borne outbreak of hemorrhagic colitis and hemolytic uremic syndrome in Washington. Journal of Clinical Microbiology. 1993 Oct;31(10):2799-801.
Russell CA, Buhrau D. The role of television viewing and direct experience in predicting adolescents’ beliefs about the health risks of fast-food consumption. Appetite. 2015 Sep 1;92:200-6.
Filet F. Allergen Information [Internet]. Origin.bk.com. 2017 [cited 2023 Oct 19]. Available from: https://origin.bk.com/pdfs/allergens.pdf