Subway has been very smart in the way that they market their brand. Touted as a healthy alternative to traditional fast food, they have grown at an alarmingly quick rate and have (supposedly) overtaken McDonald’s as the largest “fast food” chain in the world.
With approximately 1,000 more global stores than McDonald’s, Subway is growing at six new stores per week, and they show no signs of stopping any time soon. However, is there success due to the fact that they are indeed better for you than the greasy, fatty fare of the past generation or is there success simply a result of their intuitive marketing strategy?
When Subway says “Eat Fresh,” which is their slogan, it really pertains to the act of constructing the sandwich before your very eyes as opposed to pre-packaging them the way that many fast food chains do. However, their marketing might suggest that their “food” is “fresher than that of other chains.
It is pretty obvious to the average consumer how different Subway and McDonald’s are. McDonald’s burgers are fried on a flat grill and their side dishes are french fries that are deep fried in oil. Subway sandwiches, on the other hand, are basically sliced meat deli sandwiches that use fresh vegetables for toppings.
On the side, Subway lets you choose from various “healthier” chips or fresh-baked cookies. Of course, both fast food chains serve a variety of “main dishes” and “side dishes” that cater to consumers with varying tastes (pun intended).
The real question, though, is whether or not the processed meat that Subway serves on their sandwiches is really as “healthy” as they claim that they are. Sure, it is probably true that these sandwiches are lower in things like saturated fat (which fried burgers are generally high in), but that does not necessarily mean that a processed meat sandwich will be lower in total fat calories, cholesterol, or other concerns that you might have.
Upon further investigation of Subway’s products, namely on their website, you will find that their meat is, indeed “reformed.” This means that their sliced deli meats are basically scraps of protein (possibly left behind from processing other meat) that are compressed and then formed into slices with water, additives, and binding agents.
Additives usually means “preservatives” which is something that people who want to eat natural foods (like fresh sandwiches) are trying to avoid.
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