Opinion – Do KFC and McDonald’s target the poor? Fast food restaurants concentrated in areas of deprivation – Mirror Online – John Gelmini

McDonalds restaurants and KFC’s can be found in genteel places, like Cheltenham in Gloucestershire and in places like Bath, England, a place which Dr Alf once knew well because he lived there. In America, where I lived for some years, they are sited near road junctions all over the country where people of all income brackets can eat their wares. In the UK, people in more genteel areas lobby councils to have proposed sites based well away from their wisteria clad houses, so a disproportionate number of these outlets are sited further away in more downmarket areas. However, you can find them all over London and our major Cities and even in Kensington and the Square Mile, hardly bastions of austerity.

The charge of targeting the poor is accurate, in the sense that fast-food prices match the budgets of the poor better than the costs of eating in the Gay Hussar, the Ritz or the Savoy and because fast food contains chemicals, which are addictive enough to trigger pleasure receptors in their brains make people want to eat more of it. That said, people are not automatons and are not forced at gunpoint to eat Big Macs or KFC “Zingers”, despite the fact that the late Colonel Saunders is the second most well known person on the planet. He, as a pensioner, built what is now a £23 billion gbp turnover business employing people all over the world from a zero start visiting 1009 restaurants to sell his secret recipe whilst travelling and sleeping in his car and using petrol station toilets for washing and shaving.

Local authorities and the government have to balance the revenue and the simple jobs created by the likes of KFC and McDonalds, against the costs to the NHS but since they lack a magic wand, they cannot eliminate the poor, reduce their numbers nor give them enough money to enable them to lead healthier lifestyles and eat nutritious food.

John Gelmini

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