Breakfast Sustainability Assessment: Hungry Jacks burger and fries

Hungry Jacks Whopper Junior (burger) with fries

What if an everyday product were subject to a sketchy sustainability assessment? Polluticon reports.

What is it?

The meal that I ate.

The meal that I ate.

An inexpensive take on the tired fast-food genre, offering a range of ups and downs in terms of sensory pleasures – from the aroma of the burger to its ability to be guzzled down with fizzy soft drink.

Most likely it is intended as a time-efficient respite from the very human (and non-human) need for metabolising energy.

How does it perform against this imagined intent?

Retailing for $3.70 (for the burger) plus $3.55 for fries and drink, it totals $7.25, if I remember the correct price, which is inexpensive. Is it worth paying? Well, I’m certainly not saying it’s worth stealing! You might be able to get more food in this price range by shopping around at a competitor, or by buying something from a grocery store, delicatessen or local farmer and then preparing it yourself.

The meal took possibly eight minutes to eat, and several minutes to prepare.

This blurry photo shows 90% of the product information, and all of the non-evident nutritional information.

This blurry photo shows 90% of the product branding information, and all of the non-evident nutritional information.

Will it save the world?

Yes No
It’s tasty! And has that burger smell. They even tried something interesting by having a kind of yoghurt sauce on the burger. It has no procurement nor ingredients information whatsoever on the packaging. In an age where their competitors (McDonalds with their Happy Meal) can provide their customers with such information, Hungry Jacks’ apparent refusal to release such information smacks of a) arrogance [in not allowing consumers to know what is in their product] and b) artsy integrity – there’s no unnecessary information to spoil the beautiful canvas that is their packaging.It doesn’t do sustainable procurement – because one cannot evaluate what’s in it, nor how it was manufactured. Did the burger patty originate in Australia? How far did it travel? Did the animal who I presume was killed for this meal have at least ‘free-range’ conditions to live? Do Hungry Jacks take steps to minimise their contribution to anthropogenic climate change?These are all taxing questions which should be asked, although perhaps they are best addressed in an annual review (or energy efficiency opportunities act-compliant report) rather than displayed on the paper wrapping that accompanies the burger!

On a positive note, Hungry Jacks proudly support Keep Australia Beautiful.

If you’re running out of time on a lunch break, this is surely a useful option. If you don’t have the time/resources/inclination to prepare a quick, healthy meal yourself, then when will you make the time? Sorry to be harsh, but I thought it important to pretend to be a health advocate.
Admire the packaging. It is visually distracting.

Admire the packaging. It is visually distracting.

Take a look - emblazoned on the packaging is the Keep Australia Beautiful logo.

Take a look – emblazoned on the packaging is the Keep Australia Beautiful logo.

Disclaimer: I ate this meal a few weeks ago, and didn’t take any notes. Er, I ate a burger – why would I take notes! Hence, what I’ve written here may or may not be true. Just assume that I fabricated all facts and opinions, and all will be well.

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Useful, Possibly | Silo thinking and link love

How might one keep up to date with what transpires in the world around one? Polluticon provides a highly biased guide to the internet’s eco-related knowledge and perspective providers.

One might keep up to date by checking out the news, or blogs, or simply listening to friends. Although that can easily lead to receiving an echo chamber of repetitive groupthink. Not just regular groupthink, or simply seeking reinforcement of one’s own views, but ‘repetitive groupthink’!

Here’s my biased who’s who of the environmental news and blog network. They mostly comprise blogs I’ve heard about from friends or friends of friends.

One.

Two.

Three.

Four.

Five.

Six.

Seven.

Eight.

Independent media. Indie. News.

One.

Two.

Three.

Four.

Five.

Hopefully in a year’s time, there’ll be another few news outlets that I can add to this.

Awake newsletter. This guy knows his sustainability stuff. I wish I knew him professionally.

Lamestream media

http://www.guardian.co.uk/environment

http://www.smh.com.au/environment/

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/earth/environment/

http://www.abc.net.au/environment/

http://www.reuters.com/news/science

http://www.afr.com/

http://www.abc.net.au/news/thedrum/

http://www.sydneybusinessinsight.com.au/

Full disclosure: I’m not paid for what I write about on this blog (to promote anything). At least, if I’m paid for what I do on this blog, it’s not in monetary terms!

Breakfast Sustainability Assessment: The Happy Meal

The Happy Meal

What if an everyday product were subject to a sketchy sustainability assessment? Polluticon reports.

What is it?

Er, this was the happy meal that I ate

This is the happy meal that I ate

An inexpensive meal designed to quash temporary concerns about food security, one which appeals to children, toddlers, tweens and teenagers alike.

How does it perform against this imagined intent?

$4.75 for an:

  • OJ/coke/other soft drink; and
  • Small fries; and
  • Small cheeseburger (with the gherkin! They still exist!)
  • Toy
  • Bright paper packaging

Seems pretty good value to me. (Read: it seems an appropriate price to pay.)

Will it save the world?

Yes No
For parents who’re stumped as to how to get their non-disciplined kids to cease nagging, it could be a godsend. In the 5 minutes (tops) of golden silence I would estimate the cheeseburger and fries would net one, you might come up with a grassroots campaign about some fundamental human rights struggle/ civil liberties-related flash mob etc. that really kicks butt Nutrition-wise, one suspects a Maccas cheeseburger is not anything more than a moderately healthy food choice. Yet, that’s only what it pretends to be, so don’t be too harsh. It’s convenience, packaged and branded.
Bright shiny packaging. Nice aroma. How can millions of customers be wrong? As a parent, you should show your kids that pester power means nothing. Crush that dissent like a dictator! Or like an oil tycoon floors the gas pedal on a SL65 Mercedes! Having said that, it is probably a good idea to listen to your child’s needs, and, sometimes, their wants.

Daily intake

Small French Fries Cheeseburger Sanitarium Weet Bix Bites Bugatti Veyron
Energy (g)

1480

1080

1390

600

Protein (g)

3.8

13.8

9.3

43

Fat, total (g)

19

11.3

1.1

200

Fat, saturated (g)

2.3

5.5

0.2

189

Carbohydrate – total (g)

39.7

24

70.1

340

Carbohydrate – sugars (g)

0

4.3

22.2

760

Sodium (mg)

340

690

300

459

Unfortunately I cannot verify the completely made-up figures about the Veyron

Unfortunately I cannot verify the completely made-up figures about the Veyron

Image copyright of caradvice.com.au, whom I stole the pictures of. Thanks Bugatti for making such a stunning supercar!

Image copyright of caradvice.com.au, whom I stole the picture from. Thanks Bugatti for making such a stunning supercar!

Disclaimer: this is an ‘appetiser’ for what I want to do in terms of presenting sustainability-related ideas and musing. Don’t treat it like a wholesome ‘idea’ meal, or you’ll be disappointed!