On National French Fry Day, 5 Strange but True Stories

Everything you didn't know that you didn't know about french fries.


Thursday is National French Fry Day, which is an amazing excuse to indulge in the best snack to eat at 3 a.m. and then forget about until you burp the next morning.

You might consider yourself a french fry expert. You swear that you could tell the difference between a McDonald’s fry and a Burger King fry in a blindfolded taste test. And you obviously know that if you take leftover fries to-go, you reheat them in the oven, not the microwave. But are you sure you know everything there is about those crispy, deep-friend taters?

Check out these five weird french fry facts and expand your hor-fry-zons.

1. McDonald’s uses “natural beef flavor” in their fries

McDonald's fries ingredient list.
In your heart of hearts, you must have known this already, right? 

I for one don’t like to think too deeply about what’s in my french fries, but people with dietary restrictions don’t have that same luxury. Because of the natural beef flavoring in McDonald’s fries, they’re just not an option for people who don’t eat meat. Another big L for vegetarians, and my official excuse for why I’ll never become one.

2. Fries provided fodder for this murderer’s famous last words

Screengrab from Reddit about murdered James French
He was right. That is a good headline. 

James French definitely came up with that joke before his execution. Like, no way that was on the spot. So my question is: when? Did anyone laugh when he said it? The fact that I will never know the answer torments me.

3. Fries can cost you your job

SAN FRANCISCO - AUGUST 21: A container of Burger King french fries sit on a tray at a Burger King restaurant August 21, 2008 in San Francisco, California. Burger King, the second largest hamburger chain in the U.S., surprised Wall Street today with better than excected quarterly earnings. The company reported a surge in net income with earnings of $51 million, or 37 cents per share compared to $36 million, or 26 cents per share one year ago. (Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)
Would you risk your gainful employment for these fries?

In 2013, a long-time Burger King employee in Vancouver, Canada was fired over a fry-based misunderstanding, in which she took home a medium fry and orange soda after her manager said she was only given permission to take home a fish sandwich. The cost of the “stolen” food? A whopping 50 cents. Luckily the employee, Ms. Usha Ram, took Burger King to court and was awarded $46,000 dollars in damages.

4. You don’t have to lie to get fresh fries

MIAMI, FL - APRIL 25: McDonald's crew member Samantha Medina prepares french fries as the McDonald's restaurant stock price reached record territory on April 25, 2017 in Miami, Florida. The company continues to beat expectations and credits changes to its menu and other new initiatives it has launched. (Photo by Joe Raedle/Getty Images)
This picture is my desktop wallpaper now. 

A rumor circulated online that the only way to get fresh fries from McDonald’s is to ask for “unsalted” fries, thereby forcing employees to whip up a fresh batch. But what kind of maniac goes to McDonald’s for unsalted fries? Redditor u/Daallee debunked that lifehack in a post. “If you are waiting to have your order taken and you notice that the large box of fries in the back of what I like to call “the incubator” has been there a while (which does happen when business is slow), you may ALWAYS ask for fresh fries,” they said. Thank. God.

5. Fries could hasten your demise

BRISTOL, ENGLAND - JANUARY 07: In this photo-illustration a man eats French fries purchased from a fast food outlet on January 7, 2013 in Bristol, England. A government-backed TV advert - made by Aardman, the creators of Wallace and Gromit - to promote healthy eating in England, is to be shown for the first time later today. England has one of the highest rates of obesity in Europe - costing the NHS 5 billion GDP each year - with currently over 60 percent of adults and a third of 10 and 11 year olds thought to be overweight or obese. (Photo by Matt Cardy/Getty Images)
You can pry these french fries from my cold, prematurely dead hands. 

According to a recent study published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, people who consumed fries more often had a higher risk of dying. But true fry lovers know that a life without fries is akin to death anyway.