A visit to their local Kentucky Fried Chicken restaurant turned frightening for one British family last week. Young Oliver Hallam, 7, sank his teeth into what he believed was a tender, juicy piece of KFC chicken purchased as takeout for dinner in Newcastle, England. But seconds later, to his horror and disgust, Hallam had pulled away not crispy fried chicken but a battered and fried paper towel.
Shock In The Bucket: KFC Serves Deep-Fried Paper Towel
Hallam’s step-mother Krystal Henderson, 29, had purchased the meal from a local KFC for dinner. At home, enthusiastic Hallam took a large first bite of what appeared to be a fried chicken leg seasoned with the Colonel’s secret recipe of 11 herbs and spices.
“He pulled it out of his mouth and when he did, it pulled away the batter – you could see the blue roll inside,” Henderson told the Daily Mail.
Inspecting the remaining piece, Henderson confirmed the blue fibers and texture were that of recycled paper towel. Hardly the ingredients expected in a fast food meal and concerning given the unknown prior use and cleanliness of the rogue kitchen towels before frying.
Just think what else was this towel used for beforehand? Had it wiped up raw chicken juices? Had it cleaned dirty tables?
“It could have bleach or disinfectant on it … Had someone wiped their hands on it, had it been used to wipe the floor?” pondered the distressed Henderson.
KFC Issues An Apology
KFC quickly initiated an investigation after Henderson’s complaint. The fast food chain soon provided an official response and apology, shared with the media.
We’re very sorry for Ms Henderson’s experience and apologized to her immediately, as well as giving her a refund at the time of the incident.
We take food quality and hygiene very seriously and unfortunately, on this extremely rare occasion, our restaurant failed to meet the high standards that both we and our customers expect.
We have retrained staff on our stringent food preparation procedures at this store to ensure this doesn’t happen again.
KFC admitted the paper towel likely fell into the breading mix used to prep raw chicken before frying. An easy mistake for a rushed kitchen worker to accidentally overlook, but a dangerous mix-up nevertheless.
Along with refunding the meal, KFC offered Henderson and family free food vouchers. But we wouldn’t be surprised if she lost her appetite for the fried chicken chain for now.
Does The UK Need Better Food Safety Standards?
On social media, food safety experts called the paper towel incident “highly alarming” and reminded fast food chains that improper food handling causes thousands of illnesses annually across Britain.
Between this recent finding and other complaints, several fast food chains are seeing their reputations tarnished. The iconic chicken brand now faces a longer road ahead proving it still takes quality ingredients and safety standards seriously in all of its locations.
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