Health experts warn against takeaways becoming 'workplace appropriate' (2024)

Health experts have warned against takeaways becoming 'workplace appropriate' after KFC revealed its £5 offer and Domino's unveiled its tempting £4 meal deal.

Office workers scrambling for a quick lunch on the high street may have to fork out up to £10 on sandwiches and snacks at popular coffee shops thanks to inflation.

But fast food chains have stormed the lunch scene by offering meals with price tags that are usually much cheaper than from supermarkets on the high street.

In March, KFC introduced a new lunch deal for just £5.49, offering a fried chicken wrap or fillet burger, crisps or a cookie, and a water or regular drink, available from Monday to Friday until 3pm.

'KFC is now workplace appropriate, for when finger lickin' is not,' the chain said in its promotional material.

Last month, Domino's also made the move, offering an irresistible £4 lunch deal.

Health experts have voiced their concerns over takeaway meal deals becoming 'work appropriate' following the lunch deal launches from KFC and Domino's

Domino's - Main: 7" Pizza or Hot & Cheesy Wrap - Side: Chicken Kickers, Chicken Strippers, Classic Chicken Wings, Crispy Golden Fries, or two Domino's Cookies. Price: £4

The pizza chain offers a 7in pizza or Hot & Cheesy Wrap with a side of withChicken Kickers, Chicken Strippers, Classic Chicken Wings, Crispy Golden Fries, or two Domino's Cookies, for less than the price of a coffee.

Louise Pilkington, Director of Innovation at Domino's said at the time: 'We are known for delighting people at dinner, but customers have been asking us to create a menu to give them a little Domino's joy at lunch.

'That's why we are launching a new £4 lunch menu with Cheeky Little Pizza and Hot & Cheesy Wraps. It's a menu of classic Domino's flavours in lunch size, and the Cheeky Little Pizzas are all under 600 calories.

'We look forward to customers popping in to see us at lunch. This is just the beginning so watch this space for more.'

Amid the cost of living crisis, affordable takeaway meals have risen in demand with Greggs last year recording pre-tax profits and plans to expand into more stores after netting 19.6 per cent of the takeaway breakfast market in the UK in 2023 - beating McDonalds.

The bakery chain offers a breakfast deal starting at just £2.85, and a lunch deal starting at £3.60.

But health experts have now swooped in to highlight the areas of concern regarding fast food chains offering such cheap and enticing meal deals.

Aisling Pigott, a spokesperson for the British Dietetic Association, told the Guardian: 'These options are not an ­everyday nourishing choice. The issue with many of these meals is the foods they displace'.

He explained that while many are incredibly high in fat and sugar, and contain hardly any fibre, having one from time to time is not an issue.

'Frequency is the concern,' he added.

Greggs offers a breakfast deal starting at just £2.85, and a lunch deal starting at £3.60

Other experts and campaigners for better quality food and farming have shared their worries that fast food meal options are becoming increasingly popular as healthier options carry heftier price tags.

Fran Bernhardt of Sustain, explained that the 'flood' of unhealthy food items are limiting our choices when it comes to a quick and affordable lunch.

It comes after medics last month revealed that one in five Brits - or around 10million adults - may be addicted to junk food.

Experts claim being hooked on ultra-processed junk is just as dangerous as being dependent on alcohol, tobacco or even drugs like cocaine.

Cheap UPFs, such as biscuits, cakes and crisps, are thought to have fueled Britain's bulging obesity crisis.

UPFs refer to items on supermarket shelves which contain ingredients people would not usually add when they were cooking homemade food.

These additions might include chemicals, colourings, sweeteners and preservatives that extend shelf life.

Dr Jen Unwin, a former food addict and chartered clinical and health psychologist, said: 'We are sleepwalking into a public health disaster.

'Although 20 per cent of adults may meet the criteria for food addiction, specifically ultra-processed food addiction, it is not a recognised clinical diagnosis'.

Experts have called on ministers to tackle the crisis, demanding action on both junk and UPFs with the same aggression the Government has dedicated to smoking.

But the government has been heavily criticised for pushing back a pre-watershed ban on junk food advertising until 2025.

In a statement to the Guardian, KFC said: 'We’re committed to providing choice and healthy balanced meals alongside great value. We’ve introduced under-500 calorie options, which are proving popular'.

It also added that the eatery has made nutritional improvements including reformulating our fries, removing full-sugar Pepsi from all restaurants, and improving the variety and nutritional content of their available sides.

Domino's explained it is 'proud' to offer customers an affordable meal deal at a time of financial pressure, stating their options contain 'fewer calories than many high-street sandwiches and other lunch alternative'.

Health experts warn against takeaways becoming 'workplace appropriate' (2024)
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