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WendyG

Mcdonald's French Fries

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I did not see the movie, but the info about the fries kind of goes along with finding old fries under car seats, etc. I don't remember any of them ever looking rotten! :blink:

Too funny! The exact same thing crossed my mind when I read this! :P

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Yes, this reminds me.....TEN years after my daughter graduated from High School, I tackled her storage closet in her room. Yup, there in her book sack were about a dozen french fries in perfect form, just as if they were ordered that day. Bet they would have tasted as fresh.....(oooh, shivers). :blink:

OMG... that just made me laugh hysterically and turned my stomach all at the same time. YUCK!!!

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http://www.csaceliacs.org/Mcdonalds.php.

It's a matter of personal choice whether or not you want to eat them, but using the most sensitive commercial test, there is no detectable gluten in McDonald's french fries.

I bolded the part... but CSA are incorrect as the analysis shows the RAST test does detect gluten. However the question is what is a commercial test. There are plently of tests that can detect this level of gluten ... they are just expensive... GC-MS can detect a MDL of 10-20 ppb... but they chose not to do quantitive tests... (presumably as they already know the answer).

This is not a valid testing methodology for a process. What they refer to as a "commercial test" they mean a screening test. Screening tests are what are used in line control not what are used to test a product. A real example is the testing used by Perrier on their bottled water... at one point they detected an organic contaminant using line screening. This prompted them to do a proper analysis. What McDonalds had run were screening tests (ELISA and RAST) but the wording they used is "commercial test". A more everyday example might be an optician. The "can you read this" ... but this is simply screening. I can read the bottom line no problem yet I need glasses (astigmatism) but the glasses require a proper test not just "if you can read this you don't need glasses".

The bottom line is the test is a cheat.... had they worded the results differently I might be more inclined to put some trust in them but they have lied in food statements before and i have no doubt they will again.

QUOTE (Ursa Major @ Jun 16 2008, 08:14 AM) *

The Canadian site says the natural flavour comes from a vegetable source. Since wheat is a grain, not a vegetable, I believe I can safely rule out gluten.

Also, they use CANADIAN ingredients here. This is what they say about the potatoes for the French fries:

I doubt they use the same ones in the U.S.

I have eaten the fries here, and my granddaughter (who is very sensitive and gets a stomach ache and D from gluten right away) eats them and is fine.

But it is good to know that when I visit the U.S. I can't eat their fries.

vegetable source as in plant not animal... I have never seen anything labeled "natural flavors, grain source"

This is exactly what I mean about wishful thinking....

But to me, the whole debate about the flavor in the oil used for parboiling by one supplier in the US is a bit puzzling. The amount of cross-contamination you risk by just touching anything in that (or any) fast food environment is a much greater concern to me. To accept that risk, and then worry about undetectable levels in the product after several dilutions of what was already a trace amount does not seem rational.

This is true.... it is however of concern because of statements like the above ....

Many people will argue again and again the fries are gluten-free.... the fries are not gluten-free and Mcdonalds has a downloadable pdf that say's so (right at the very bottom) ...

However I agree completely that the risk of CC is by many times bigger...

The reason its important is that people will read this and think they are OK ... I agree everyone should make up their own mind... I just think everyone should do so with the correct information!

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OMG! I can't believe I logged on today and found this post!

I had been eating McDOnalds fries for quite awhile after going gluten-free because I'd read online that they were safe to eat. When I finally got around to checking out the McDonald's website (fairly recently) and found that the fries DO contain gluten I stopped eating them. Until last night!! I don't know why! I was in a rush and went through the drivethu to get the kids happy meals, and I thought, what the heck, let's see how sensitive I am (I plead temporary insanity!). What a mistake. I was mindlesly chowing down on the fries when all of a sudden I felt that all too familiar feeling in my stomach. That was a torturous 20 minute drive home!! I was so sick all night, and I haven't been able to eat all day. I have no doubt I was glutened by the fries. I WON'T be eating them again. But I do understand that perhaps everyone is not so sensitive, and they can eat the fries with no problem. Just wanted to share my story. :)

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.....I had been eating McDOnalds fries for quite awhile after going gluten-free because I'd read online that they were safe to eat. When I finally got around to checking out the McDonald's website (fairly recently) and found that the fries DO contain gluten I stopped eating them. Until last night!! I don't know why! I was in a rush and went through the drivethu to get the kids happy meals, and I thought, what the heck, let's see how sensitive I am (I plead temporary insanity!). What a mistake. I was mindlesly chowing down on the fries when all of a sudden I felt that all too familiar feeling in my stomach. That was a torturous 20 minute drive home!! I was so sick all night, and I haven't been able to eat all day. I have no doubt I was glutened by the fries. I WON'T be eating them again. But I do understand that perhaps everyone is not so sensitive, and they can eat the fries with no problem. Just wanted to share my story. :)

Sounds like a classic "power of suggestion" case. Mind over matter thing. Didn't make you sick when you "thought" they were OK. Then, when you "thought" they weren't OK you got sick. Wierd.

best regards, lm

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I have no doubt I was glutened by the fries. I WON'T be eating them again. But I do understand that perhaps everyone is not so sensitive, and they can eat the fries with no problem. Just wanted to share my story. :)

I still think the most likely cause is the actual CC, not the minute amounts in the gluten.

I know we are all different.... but for me I find microscopic (as in truly microscopic) I don't tend to react straight away, its more of a build-up.

My problem with McDo and their statement is it is designed to give a false confidence. By making the issue about the oil they effectively bypass the issue of CC.

I don't know why! I was in a rush and went through the drivethu to get the kids happy meals, and I thought, what the heck, let's see how sensitive I am (I plead temporary insanity!)

Its not insanity, its called Marketing ....

That's my problem, the "Its OK for celiacs" statements they got 3rd parties to do ... mean people think "but it must be OK and I'm in such a rush today" etc.

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Sounds like a classic "power of suggestion" case. Mind over matter thing. Didn't make you sick when you "thought" they were OK. Then, when you "thought" they weren't OK you got sick. Wierd.

best regards, lm

Could be but could also be the observed reaction many of us see when we cut out the last traces of gluten and become more sensitive to small amounts?

Quite honestly as pointed out already, the chance of CC is pretty big .... in any fast food environment.

That means that one time you might be fine, ten times you might be fine but the chance is sooner or later you won't be.

Factors that influence this are as random as time of day to your local manager, if that manager is working or not at the time etc. etc.

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um....garden of eden.....appple? Ok...nobody is going to believe me, but my cat has a mouse in hismouth....going to higher ground!!!!

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Yes. McDonald's fries are okay. But always be careful about them, because they cook the fries in the same grease as they cook the chicken tenders and the chicken nuggets, which are both breaded. So just be careful around fast food places like McDonalds, Burger King, Wendy's, etc. When you go to more fancy restaurants with steak fries and such, then you are probably okay.

--CeliacSucks

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Could be but could also be the observed reaction many of us see when we cut out the last traces of gluten and become more sensitive to small amounts?

Quite honestly as pointed out already, the chance of CC is pretty big .... in any fast food environment.

That means that one time you might be fine, ten times you might be fine but the chance is sooner or later you won't be.

Factors that influence this are as random as time of day to your local manager, if that manager is working or not at the time etc. etc.

I respectfully defer to your tenure as a more experienced gluten-free Celiac. I consider myself still in the learning stages of gluten-free Celiac "for the rest of my life" living.

I've never knowingly eaten gluten. Yet I must admit, I've taken calculated risks. I've eaten products containing oats (oatmeal, cereal with oats). No ill effects, but I gave it up nonetheless, simply because it is known to be often contaminated with wheat.

I wholeheartedly agree with your first point. I was eating gluten all day every day before being diagnosed. I was chronically ill with gastrointestinal and other problems, yet could work and otherwise function. My villi were almost completely destroyed. After being diagnosed, going on a gluten-free diet, and presumably restoring my healthy villi, I suffered two instances of CC at restaraunts, which resulted in my being extremely sick for a few hours. The worst of the two also left me with a nagging stomach problem that lasted for about six weeks. Even though I was very careful eating out before, I'm much more cautious now.

The funny thing is, I've come to see fast food as my main option for eating out. I know it sounds crazy. But if you examine the two operations, and my personal tolerances, it might make sense.

I make my wife a sandwich using wheat bread. I don't use gloves or wash my hands (I do wipe my hands off though, and OK, often I do a quick splash wash). I don't get sick. I don't believe touching bread, either by me or someone else is what makes me sick. That's not to say when I eat out that I don't try to avoid having my food being touched by a food worker that has touched bread. The point is, how do you know?

In a restaraunt you simply don't know. You have absolutely no idea what's going on back there. Either with the food preparation workers, or your waitperson. Your sitting there playing Russian Roulette. You might as well have a blindfold on too.

In a fast food place you can see everything that's going on. You can observe and analize. They have a very limited menu compared to a restaraunt. They have an assembly line operation. They have uniform SOP's (standard operating procedures) that are instilled in all the workers. They have uniform cleaning practices. Every day, at the same times, the equipment is cleaned using the same standard procedures, regardless of which workers are there. As far as managers go, at least at fast food places, the managers are there in the kitchen (the whole place is a kitchen), and are forced to keep up appearences as long as the front is open and has customers. In a restaraunt, the manager is usually out front, not in the kitchen, nor watching the servers every move. Some fast food websites even list all of the ingredients and nutritional info.

Of course I'm talking about huge operations such as McDonald's and Wendy's, not some hole in the wall Taco Delight or Dairy Pride.

Now I'm not advocating being a total dumbass and going through every drive thru in town ordering willy nilly whatever you want. Or making an evaluation based on the drive thru window employee. This thing takes some serious time and effort. It also helps if you actually know someone that works there, or has knowledge of the place. Example, my son worked at McDonald's. McDonald's has always been one of my least favorite places my whole life. But, I've come to know this place pretty well. It's in my Walmart. I go in there almost every day and walk right by the McDonald's. The whole crew is Mexican, and they are hard workers. They take their jobs very seriously. The place is run like a well oiled machine, by the book. I know all the managers. My son worked the counter 'cause he speaks english. Unfortunately, there's not much for a Celiac to eat at McDonald's. Fry's and burgers without buns and that's about it. Not a big fan of either, but I have eaten them many times and never gotten sick.

Yes, the chance of CC is there .... in any fast food environment. But, I believe the chance may be even bigger in a restaraunt.

best regards, lm

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Yes. McDonald's fries are okay. But always be careful about them, because they cook the fries in the same grease as they cook the chicken tenders and the chicken nuggets, which are both breaded. So just be careful around fast food places like McDonalds, Burger King, Wendy's, etc. When you go to more fancy restaurants with steak fries and such, then you are probably oK.......

I would say exactly the complete opposite is true. McDonald's has a dedicated fryer. I would never trust a "fancy" restaurant fryer.

best regards, lm

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Yes. McDonald's fries are okay. But always be careful about them, because they cook the fries in the same grease as they cook the chicken tenders and the chicken nuggets, which are both breaded.

The fries and hash browns are cooked at the front of the store in a dedicated fryer by the counter crew in a standard layout, while everything else is cooked in the back by the grill crew. I have never seen a McDonalds where this is not the case.

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I used to work at a McDonald's, I am in Canada, and Yes they do have fryers for the fries at the front of the store, and that is the only thing that is cooked in them, to end this argument.

As far as the ingredients go: I believe that several people have posted here, that there is wheat in them in the states, but I am not sure about Canada.

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The fries and hash browns are cooked at the front of the store in a dedicated fryer by the counter crew in a standard layout, while everything else is cooked in the back by the grill crew. I have never seen a McDonalds where this is not the case.

Not only that, but the small McDonald's they put in the Walmarts do not serve a full breakfast menu. They do not serve hash browns, or eggs, pancakes, etc. Only biscuit sandwiches. Therefore, only fries are cooked in the fries fryer.

best regards, lm

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to end this argument

Only it won't because this issue is really about "is it OK to get small amounts of gluten" ...

The danger of the McDo statement is it bypasses this question. It more or less takes the decision away from the consumer by saying "the fries are safe".

as Larry mac say's

I make my wife a sandwich using wheat bread. I don't use gloves or wash my hands (I do wipe my hands off though, and OK, often I do a quick splash wash). I don't get sick. I don't believe touching bread, either by me or someone else is what makes me sick. That's not to say when I eat out that I don't try to avoid having my food being touched by a food worker that has touched bread. The point is, how do you know?

I'm extremely picky ... I only go to resto's on the whole where I know the owner or chef.

Even then its not 100% safe because non celiacs don't think of wheat/flour etc. as a toxin. People will absent mindedly (for us) wipe down a plate or fork with the same cloth they used to clean up breadcrumbs etc.

So again, my main issue is the idea it's SAFE. The fact it's everywhere and that people will see something like this thread or the CSA statement and think "Oh, I'll just get some fries then".... and totally bypass thinking about CC etc.

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Educate yourself regarding McD's french fries and then make your own decision to eat or not eat. That to me is the bottom line.

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Not only that, but the small McDonald's they put in the Walmarts do not serve a full breakfast menu. They do not serve hash browns, or eggs, pancakes, etc. Only biscuit sandwiches. Therefore, only fries are cooked in the fries fryer.

best regards, lm

Look, bottom line is this: MCDONALD'S FOOD IS BAD FOR YOU. Doesn't matter about gluten in the least, it's siemply poisonous "food" that will clog your arteries and starve your cells of what they need to heal and survive!! I agree that restaurant food is also not good....home cooked FRESH ORGANIC produce, fruits, and meats is the only way to go. Then, the OCCASIONAL restaurant or even fast food will not be as damaging (by occasional though, i mean like once every month or less, not once a week!)

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Look, bottom line is this: MCDONALD'S FOOD IS BAD FOR YOU. Doesn't matter about gluten in the least, it's siemply poisonous "food" that will clog your arteries and starve your cells of what they need to heal and survive!! I agree that restaurant food is also not good.... and home cooked FRESH ORGANIC produce, fruits, meats is the only way to go. Then, the OCCASIONAL restaurant or even fast food will not be as damaging (by occasional though, i mean like once every month or less, not once a week!)

Gosh Liz,

I thought we were talking about gluten-free stuff here. Usually the discussions on the McDonald's threads are about whether or not the fries have gluten in them. Or if they use a dedicated fryer or not. Or if a crumb from a waffle cone flew across the restaurant and magically landed on a fry.

Now you're making an argument that fast food is bad for you? May I suggest you inadvertainly posted on the wrong forum. You need the "Home Cooked FRESH ORGANIC Produce, Fruits, and Meats Forum".

This is the gluten-free forum and we're talking about eating McDonald's fries here.

best regards, lm

p.s., :D

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Gosh Liz,

I thought we were talking about gluten-free stuff here. Usually the discussions on the McDonald's threads are about whether or not the fries have gluten in them. Or if they use a dedicated fryer or not. Or if a crumb from a waffle cone flew across the restaurant and magically landed on a fry.

Now you're making an argument that fast food is bad for you? May I suggest you inadvertainly posted on the wrong forum. You need the "Home Cooked FRESH ORGANIC Produce, Fruits, and Meats Forum".

This is the gluten-free forum and we're talking about eating McDonald's fries here.

best regards, lm

p.s., :D

I know, you're right :)

But I really do get surprised by the junk that so many gluten sensitive people eat. When you are already dealing with a damaged digestive system, you really need high quality nutrition to heal, so it blows me away how much fast food and processed gluten-free crap people are willing to put into their bodies. As usual though, people usually need to learn the hard way...c'est la vie!

please forgive my preaching, and enjoy your "fries that never rot" but oh so delicious mc d's french fries to your heart's content :)

take care

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The topic here is whether or not the fries contain gluten, and if so, whether they contain enough to be a risk to a celiac. Let's see if we can keep to the topic.

A general discussion about the healthiness of restaurant prepared food is fine, but it should be another thread. It doesn't belong here.

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Educate yourself regarding McD's french fries and then make your own decision to eat or not eat. That to me is the bottom line.

It may be the bottom line but the information is missing ...

If the CSA walked into 100 or better 1000 McDonalds and purchased fries, had them analyzed and published the results we might get a representative test.

However we don't have this to base decisions on.... we have a very misleading report paid for by McDonalds. (I say its misleading on two factors) ..

1/ In my opinion as a scientific report writer this is written to mislead. The summary does not reflect the conclusion.

2/ So many people say "but the fries don't contain gluten".

To put it simply, if McDo's are putting an idea out that the fries are safe ... BUT they have totally bypassed if this is the case because they miss CC.

People are seizing the former ... (a biased report) and ignoring the latter because we are stuck for places to get convenience food that's safe. McDonalds are exploiting that "need" as a business.

It is really our job, as much as anyones to set this straight...

I'm sure there are good and bad McDo's .. but at least the overall question "Are McDo's fries safe" should not follow the marketing ploy of McDo's.

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When I called them I was told that one of the flavors had a wheat component and that the amount of wheat in the finished french fry product was so low that they could be considered gluten free. However they will make no guarantees about their gluten free status. I'm not that proud of it, but I've let my son eat their fries three times now and he has never gotten sick. I always tell them that they cannot touch wheat or breading and then I watch the employee that handles them like a hawk. :rolleyes:

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I've given them to my son too and I ALWAYS know when he's had gluten cause he totally falls apart over NOTHING... he's never reacted to the fries. I mistakenly let him have some grilled chicken once and he got glutened by that (it contains "wheat gluten") and I just figured it was chicken without breading so I gave him some. but once again no reaction to the french fries and since he is only 3 and he already can't have cookies and crackers and cake and other things at birthday parties and child care and church etc etc etc. I am not going to rob him of his french fries!!

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.....

To put it simply, if McDo's are putting an idea out that the fries are safe ... BUT they have totally bypassed if this is the case because they miss CC.

.....

Where is the CC in the fries? They have a dedicated fryer. What would it take to make McDonald's fries more safe than your comfortable restaurant, where they most certainly do not have a dedicated fryer?

A point Celiacs should know is that they do not fry the fries in a dedicated fryer for our benefit. Far from it, they only do so because otherwise the fries would taste like chicken or fish. Also, the oil would become fouled (no pun intended) with flour batter droppings.

The world does not revolve around Celiacs. They sell tens of millions of orders of fries worldwide every day. I can't see them building their marketing strategy around "how can we deceive the Celiacs". If they were that concerned about us they would simply remove the tiny amount of wheat flavoring in the oil.

But why should they bother? Even that would not satisfy some people (care to guess who?). My main point is, if you say CC is an issue with McDonald's fries, than CC is an issue anywhere you eat out. Fast food or restaurant.

best regards, lm

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