Burger King unveils skinnier spuds

by Monica Watrous
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MIAMI — Burger King Worldwide is unveiling a skinnier spud for the health-conscious set.

Satisfries are crinkle-cut french fries with 40% less fat and 30% fewer calories than McDonald’s fries. Using a batter that absorbs less oil than traditional taters, the product is cut from whole potatoes and fried to a crispy exterior with a hot, fluffy interior.

A medium serving has 340 calories and 14 grams of fat, compared with a medium serving of McDonald’s fries, which contains 380 calories and 19 grams of fat. Burger King’s original french fries, which contain 410 calories and 18 grams of fat in a medium serving, will continue to be offered.

The introduction follows a series of menu moves from other quick-service restaurants to boost better-for-you offerings, including a high-protein, lower-carb menu at Taco Bell, egg-white breakfast sandwiches at McDonald’s and flatbread chicken sandwiches at Wendy’s. Earlier this year, Burger King also launched its first-ever turkey burger for a limited time.

According to The Healthy Eating Consumer Trend Report, which was published in 2012 by Technomic Inc., Chicago, 64% of the consumers polled, up from 57% in 2010, agree that it is important to eat healthy and pay attention to nutrition.

“Leading chains are trying to align with consumers’ changing expectations for health,” said Mary Chapman, director of product innovation for the food service market research firm. “McDonald’s, for example, rolled out new menu boards with calorie counts to stay ahead of nutrition-disclosure legislation. Other major Q.S.R.s are creating lighter, better-for-you options in order to keep up with consumers’ demands for having these options available to them.”
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