Burger King is known for its crazy advertising and creative fast food promotions. In Russia, the chain once offered a “Double Suicide Burger” that included a packet of mustard gas and another where customers found a bottle of suicide pills with their fries.
In India, the company sold spicy chicken wings called “Mehra Nuggets” named after then Minister of State for Youth Affairs Ajay Mehta who was widely believed to be the target of this stunt as his surname rhymes with “nugget”.
The ads for this promotion featured Ajay Mehta as Hitler. the company sold Whoppers topped with a small black spider that came out when you bit into it. So what can we expect from Burger King’s latest promotion? An LGBTQ+ Pride version of their classic Whopper sandwich is available in just one location: New York City.
What’s in the Burger King Pride Whopper?
Pride Whopper is served on a black bun with a rainbow-colored paper wrapper. The patty, tomato, lettuce, and pickles are all colored with food colors, but the company hasn’t specified which ones.
There are also multicolored sprinkles on the top bun. The burger’s special Thousand Island-style dressing is available in three colors, namely red, blue and pink. Blue and pink varieties are labeled as “for pride” and red as “for love”. So what’s inside these special ingredients? If you’re expecting edible glitter or rainbow-colored food, it’s best you don’t get your hopes up.
The red dressing is made with strawberry and paprika-flavored food coloring. The blue dressing is made with indigo carmine, a reddish-blue pigment derived from the dried bodies of female cochineal insects and the pink one comes from the Allura red dye.
Why has Burger King Released a Rainbow-Colored Whopper?
Burger King is no stranger to wacky food promotions, but their latest stunt is arguably the company’s most impressive. The iconic fast-food chain has replaced the buns of their Whoppers with rainbow-colored burger buns to celebrate Pride. The fast-food chain is selling the special “Pride Whopper” in just one location: New York City.
The company has also given their staff rainbow-colored whopper boxes and gloves for the event, with the gloves being rainbow-colored as well. While Burger King has partnered with Pride organizations in the past, this is the first time the company has integrated Pride into all aspects of their business, from the food to the decor.
Burger King’s vice president of global marketing, Silvia Lagnado, said the aim was to “celebrate love”. She said: “We want to celebrate love and inspire acceptance and inclusion for everyone, and Pride is a great opportunity to do that.
The Darker Side of Fast Food Brands Supporting Pride
So far, everything about Burger King’s Pride Whopper sounds like a wonderful gesture of love and acceptance. But there’s a darker side to corporate brands like Burger King, McDonald’s, and Pepsi sponsoring Pride events. While these companies are spreading love and acceptance among the LGBTQ+ community, they are doing so at the expense of other minority groups.
People of America, for example, have criticized brands like Coca-Cola and Pepsi for appropriating and distorting their culture with logos and products that have no connection to the people they are intended to represent. Burger King’s choice to release a rainbow-colored Whopper to celebrate Pride is a perfect example of this.
Is the New York City Burger King Showing Its Support for LGBTQ+ Rights?
The truth is, that Burger King has no intention of donating any of the proceeds from the sale of Pride Whoppers towards LGBTQ+ rights. And even if they did, the company would most likely make up the difference with their other products, leaving the Pride Whopper a purely symbolic gesture.
New York’s Burger King’s decision to make the Pride Whopper a limited edition item gives the company plausible deniability when questioned about its contribution to the LGBTQ+ community.
They can easily explain that they can make the product available in limited quantities because they wanted to make sure as many people as possible could enjoy it. Indeed, the company made sure to make the Pride Whopper’s availability as limited as possible. The restaurant only sold them on June 19 and 20, New York City’s Pride march days.
The Burger King Pride Whopper is just one example of how multinational fast-food brands can use PR stunts to appear more socially conscious and inclusive. These limited-edition Pride items are typically available in only a handful of locations, making them available to only a tiny percentage of the LGBTQ+ community.
The message these companies are sending with these symbolic gestures is that they want to appear accepting of LGBTQ+ people, but only as long as it doesn’t affect their profits. The Pride Whopper and other similar PR stunts are a way for these companies to make more money off the LGBTQ+ community while making it appear that they are helping the community at the same time.
If you’re in the New York City area, you can try a Pride Whopper for yourself at the following address: Burger King Pride Whopper is Making Waves