Who says everyone wants to eat healthily?

We all know that we should be eating five portions of fruit or vegetables and drinking a minimum of two litres of water a day. But as much as we all try to do this there is more evidence by way of deals this week to suggest that actually on a global level there is nothing we like more than tripping off to fast food joints.

Just in the last couple of days news has broken about the largest McDonalds franchisee globally potentially planning an IPO in the US that could raise up to $1 billion. In addition to this Goldman Sachs’s private equity arm is also being linked with the potential acquisition of Applebee’s Neighborhood Grill and Bar restaurants for several hundred million dollars.

Having experienced Applebee’s on a couple of occasions in the US I would definitely classify them more as a sort of waitress-service fast food joint, rather than the generously applied term of “restaurant”.

Last year also saw the acquisition of Burger King Holdings for over $3b and “casual” dining, as these sort of companies now prefer to be called, have reported increasing sales even as people “down sized” their spend on eating out during the economic downturn experienced in the last couple of years.

Even if we are able to kid ourselves that fries actually are potatoes, and thus classify as one of our daily five, and that milkshakes are loosely made of milk, so we are only contributing to our calcium daily intake, the value of deals the casual dining companies are involved in clearly indicates that we still have an appetite for foods that taste good even if they aren’t typically part of an overall balanced diet.

Filed under: IPOs, retail, food