If there were ever a reason to quit eating fast food, this would be the perfect one.
An investigation from BBC One’s watchdog team has revealed that they have found traces of bacteria from fecal matter in the ice served at McDonalds, Burger King and KFC in the U.K.
The Liverpool Echo reports that scientists sampled the ice from ten random branches of each fast food chain to determine whether the ice contained coli-forms that indicates contamination from bacteria.
The disturbing results revealed that seven out of 10 KFC locations had fecal bacteria in its ice and six out of 10 Burger King restaurants revealed the same findings. It only gets worse for KFC and BK, as five and four of its locations, respectively, have “significant” amounts. Meanwhile, McDonald’s had the lowest results with only three out of the 10 tested locations had contaminated ice.
Tony Lewis, the Head of Policy and Education at the Chartered Institute of Environmental Health gave his take on the findings in a statement given to the Echo. “It’s extremely worrying. When we’re finding the sorts of numbers we’re finding here, you have to look at the people making the ice, handling the ice, which they then transfer into customers’ drinks.
“And then you also have to look at hygiene failure with potentially the machines themselves: are they being kept clean?”
Spokesmen from KFC, Burger King and McDonalds each gave statements on the horrific findings.
“We are shocked and extremely disappointed by these results,” said the KFC spokesperson. “We have strict procedures for the management and handling of ice, including daily and weekly inspections and cleaning of the ice machine and storage holds, as well as the routine testing of ice quality across our business.”
“Cleanliness and hygiene are a top priority for the Burger King® brand,” said the Burger King spokesperson. “The strict procedures we have in place are designed to ensure all Guests have a positive experience each time they visit our restaurants. We are proactively working with our franchisees in the U.K. to reinforce these procedures. This report is an opportunity for us to emphasize our training procedures and ensure all operations and safety standards are upheld in all Burger King® restaurants.”
The McDonald’s spokesperson stated, “We have robust procedures in place with regard to the production, storage and handling of ice in our UK restaurants. Nothing is more important than the safety of our customers and people and we will continue to review our procedures and training, working closely with our restaurant teams to ensure those procedures are adhered to at all times.
They added: “As the investigation highlights, there are no specific ice production standards in place, only those relating to unfrozen drinking water. We would therefore welcome the introduction of an agreed standard and would be happy to work with relevant industry bodies.”
If it is this bad in the U.K., who knows what the bacteria is like at these same restaurants in the United States.