Burger King Seeking Healthier Image With Low-Fat Fries

Burger King Worldwide Inc., the world’s second-largest hamburger chain, is adding reduced-fat, reduced-calorie French fries to its menu as it tries to lose its junk-food image.

The new crinkle-cut fries, to be called Satisfries, will contain 190 calories, 8 grams of fat and 210 milligrams of sodium for a “value-size” serving, the Miami-based company said today in a statement.

“One out of every two Burger King guests orders our classic French fries and we know our guests are hungry for options that are better for them,” Alex Macedo, Burger King’s North American president, said in the statement.

Fast food chains have come under fire from health groups for contributing to an obesity problem in the U.S. by selling high-fat content food. About two-thirds of adults in the country are overweight and one-third are obese, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said in a report published in May. Rising obesity leads to higher medical costs and risks of diseases such as diabetes and heart-disease.

Other popular fast food chains have also been trying to get rid of their junk-food tag, with McDonald’s offering an under-400-calories menu, while Dunkin’ Brands Group Inc. introduced a DD Smart menu. Yum! Brands Inc.’s KFC is also trying to make kids’ meals healthier offering grilled chicken, applesauce and green beans.

Burger King, home of the Whopper, said the difference between Satisfries and its classic French fries is that less oil is absorbed in the cooking process.

Burger King rose 0.2 percent to $19.83 at 9:37 a.m. in New York. The shares climbed 20 percent this year through yesterday.

Before it's here, it's on the Bloomberg Terminal.