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goodfoodgood is a web portal which provides information about food and ingredients to people around the world. We take the dinner conversation online to share knowledge and inspire others to care about what they eat.

What’s the Difference?

If you are curious on the most common food that comes to mind when Americans are mentioned. This post takes a brief overview on peoples favorite “food on the go”. The cheeseburger is available everywhere and I do mean everywhere, from California to Japan and pretty much everywhere in between. It also tends to vary in price and even though it’s made cheaper in some places than others, there’s a big common question, “what’s the difference?”  

What’s the Difference?


I feel the need to speak a bit about a personal favorite of mine, the cheeseburger, “the corner stone of any nutritional breakfast”, just kidding. But on a serious note when it comes to fast food chains and your neighborhood eatery, there is a common question, ”what’s the difference?” Well, being an American and also working an adequate amount of time at both kinds of places, as well as being a “junk food junkie” I think I would be well-suited to answer the big question.

If you have eaten as many cheeseburgers as Wimpy and I, then you might have an idea of what I’m about to say. For those out there who eat on a budget, the first thing you might notice is price. Most fast food chains offer burgers from a dollar and up. The biggest question of all is ”is that burger really worth a buck?” Well, let’s think about it.

The beauty of restaurant engineering

At a normal “mom and pop” shop, what happens usually is they buy FRESH ground beef in large amounts. From there they either use a scale or occasionally a large ladle to make sure that each patty is of the same weight/amount. After that hey use a thing called a burger-press to stamp the meat into a perfect patty or even press it by hand and shape it into a perfectly round disc of meat. After all that love and care, the meat is dropped onto a grill and cooked to the perfect temperature and topped with cheese a couple minutes before it’s done. Then the burger is dressed with condiments and vegetables.

The biggest thing you should consider is the quality of the meat from both places serve. Restaurants cook their meat on a grill. If you ever look over the counter, fast food places tend do thing with a microwave, especially, to get the cheese melted at the end.

The fast food failure!

The majority of fast food tends to just get a box of frozen, pre-made patties. The meat is prepared in large-scale factories by machines. Of course there are a few people around to over look these machines but that’s it as far as love and care goes. Remember, machines are incapable of love and care; it’s not apart of their programming. The patties come out on large conveyer belt in large number. In my opinion, that makes it a bit difficult for a few people to confirm the quality of all this meat.

Restaurants get their meat from meat suppliers. The suppliers are filled with properly trained butchers that grind down the beef and are on a vigilant watch with a trained eye for quality. The meat they use comes from a farm where a farmer raises the cattle until their “big day”. If you take the time to ask one of these butchers, they’ll most likely tell you exactly where the cattle were raised.

Corporate fast food chains tend to have their own farms where the cattle are raised, but they tend to keep these locations disclosed. Now, this is for one on two reasons, either it’s because they just like to keep secrets, or they aren’t particularly proud of where the meat is from. Because of lawsuit reasons I don’t want to mention names but if you Google “(fast food chains name) cattle farms”, you’ll find a lot of skeletons these corporations prefer to keep in the closet. For the most part, all the articles speak more in depth about how these corporate cattle farms are based in poorer countries because it’s cheaper for them to do business this way. This means they are not supporting your local farmers who are, honestly, the backbone of your society. Also, if these rumors are true, this mean they are exporting your money to other countries. This isn’t necessarily a bad thing unless you happen to be in an economical defecate.

So on a quick recap, paying a little more than a buck for a burger helps keep your neighborhood establishments open. That money also goes to local people like butchers and farmers. I don’t even want to get into the differences in health facts because I’m trying to bring this to a close. Next time you are about to go get a burger for a buck think about the little guy and then your health, and if you can’t afford a little more for quality then maybe you should just go get some fruit, it’s better for you anyway.


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