There are many reasons why fast food has recently become indispensable for many — it’s delicious, widely available, and inexpensive. Sadly, it’s also the main factor contributing to the obesity pandemic and related diseases.
So, let’s examine some intriguing statistics about the fast-food industry and find out just how popular fast food is in the US and the world.
How Many People Eat Fast Food?
According to the CDC, at least 36.6% of US adults ate fast food on any given day between 2013 and 2016, which translates to roughly 84.8 million people. This number could have recently increased due to upward fast food consumption trends.
Global Fast Food Consumption — Eye-Opening Stats and Facts
The following stats and facts throw light on the prevalence of fast food consumption, especially in the US. It also highlights the speed of the fast-food market growth as well as factors contributing to its expansion.
Americans aged 20–39 eat the most fast food.
According to the CDC, 44.9% of Americans aged 20–39 ate fast food between 2013 and 2016.
Fast food consumption prevalence seemed to decrease with age. Therefore, 37.7% of individuals aged 40–59 and 24.1% of those aged 60+ consumed fast food.
The global fast-food market is projected to reach $931 billion by 2027.
The market was forecast to grow at a CAGR of 4.6% between 2020 and 2027.
The main factors contributing to the market growth include the increase in the number of fast-food restaurants, the increase in the number of working women, the emergence of online ordering options, increased demand for international cuisines, etc.
The main hindering factors include the high cost of setting up a fast-food restaurant and consumers’ health concerns about fast food (e.g., obesity, etc.).
McDonald’s is the most popular fast-food chain worldwide.
(Investopedia) (USA TODAY)
This comes as no surprise considering it has over 39,000 locations in about 100 countries worldwide. By extension, it’s also the most popular fast-food restaurant in the US, selling 75 hamburgers every second at one point.
The brand value of McDonald’s amounted to $130.36 billion in 2019.
(PR Newswire) (Statista)
Furthermore, McDonald’s generated $23.22 billion in revenue in 2021 alone.
There are at least 874,638 fast-food restaurants in the world.
Moreover, fast food restaurants employ at least 13,458,146 people around the globe.
About 80% of adult Americans eat fast food at least once a week.
(Local 3 News)
Interestingly, financial status wasn’t the determining factor when it came to fast food consumption. It was long working hours that attracted people to this easily accessible food.
It’s clear that the fast-food business is growing and shows no sign of slowing down any time soon. But will the health-conscious trend prevail and reduce the excessive calorie intake? Only time can tell.