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This Popular Fast Food Chain Wastes an Insane Amount of Food, Employee Says

An employee's TikTok video exposes the unbelievable volume of one day's waste at this chain. See it here.

Two national pizza chains recently changed their supply chain policies after a report exposed cruel animal treatment in their meat processing. After you read this story, you may hope another well-known chain will do some similar reflecting. A worker at the world's biggest donut destination has posted a nearly one-minute video illustrating the epic amount of waste that occurs every time a single franchise location closes. Here's how many trays they trashed.

Via Meaww, TikTok user and Dunkin' employee @kath.dias captured video of the trays and trays (and trays) of goods that tossed at Dunkin's closing time. At a lengthy 56 seconds, the video shows the young employee and a coworker tossing a ridiculous 32 trays, the vast majority of them completely full, of Dunkin' donuts and bagels.

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Dias does the work dutifully, but occasionally looks into the camera poker-faced as she exposes how much food the chain wastes. And while it appears she lives in Brazil, this is a reminder of the fact that Dunkin' had nearly 13,000 restaurants worldwide before Inspire Brands (the company that owns chains like Arby's, Baskin Robbins, SONIC Drive-In, and Buffalo Wild Wings) acquired Dunkin' for $11.3 billion in late 2020.

The Dunkin' video, sparked outrage on social media over the degree of food waste that occurs. Unfortunately, said one user, this is not at all an isolated practice—in fact, this level of food waste happens at many chains. u/McRibeater on Reddit said:

"I worked at Starbucks and the same thing happened. We used to throw away a sh*t ton at Starbucks, we're talking about sandwiches, lunchboxes, breakfast sandwiches, pastries, etc. Like a garbage bag or even two full some nights. I knew someone who got fired because the Store Manager was encouraging taking food home as most Baristas were broke students, but the District Manager found out and terminated them. Big food corporations suck on so many levels."

@varunkrish tweeted: "Ouch, this could feed so many homeless or underprivileged folks if it is given promptly."

It makes sense that chains want to serve food that seems fresh to customers. However, the World Food Program U.S.A states: "Roughly 30 to 40 percent of the food supply in the U.S. is wasted, which works out to more than 20 pounds of food per person per month." The organization adds that reversing this would preserve enough food to feed two billion people.

Especially given how some experts say human food consumption patterns drive climate change—combined with the need that has occurred due to economic impacts of the pandemic—it may be high time for restaurants to develop new practices.

It's certainly worth considering next time you're brainstorming which drive-thru to visit. Get the Eat This, Not That! newsletter for the news you need about your favorite restaurants, and keep reading:

@kath.dias???♬ Lofi – Domknowz

Krissy Gasbarre
Krissy is a senior news editor at Eat This, Not That!, managing morning and weekend news related to nutrition, wellness, restaurants and groceries (with a focus on beverages), and more. Read more about Krissy