Weighing in on the New Preservative-Free Whopper

by Anna Lappé

I was pleased to get to weigh in on Burger King’s announcement—via a (literally) moldy ad—to go preservative-free. As I said in this ABC News segment, the fast food chain’s decision was just one more signal that companies are responding to the tectonic shift in the marketplace, as eaters across all demographics are seeking out foods without preservatives and other additives, food grown without pesticides and synthetic fertilizers, and meat raised with routine antibiotics. I did note that we would all do good to remember that, preservatives or not, fast food is still not healthy food. I also stressed that the biggest health and environmental impact of Burger King’s supply chain isn’t its preservatives, it’s the beef. Last year, the company bowed to public pressure and agreed to root out deforestation in its supply chain, but gave itself a 2030 deadline for doing so. That’s not nearly soon enough—and we should keep the pressure on to make the company do more, sooner.