And once again Burger King has to fight for its reputation in Germany. The company is once again caught up in a violent hygiene scandal. Eight years after the first Würger King scandal, RTL’s “Team Wallraff” visited several branches and discovered grievances. FOCUS online says whether all branches are affected and what you need to look out for.

Eight years after the great hygiene scandal, Burger King becomes the Würg King again.

Undercover reporters from the RTL show “Team Wallfraff” discovered expired rolls, rotten meat, maggots and mouse droppings in branches of the fast-food giant. They smuggled themselves into several Burger King branches as employees and were able to identify abuses during the trial and induction period.

In their research, the RTL reporters repeatedly encounter shortcomings in the so-called holding times. Food is labeled with time information, the product must be used up by this time. The label also states when tomato, lettuce, cheese and other foods need to be thrown away. That’s what the company’s guidelines say.

In a branch in Bernau near Berlin, the reporter can regularly observe how the stickers on the holding times are simply removed and the storage boxes are provided with new holding times. In the same branch, expired sauce bottles were simply refilled with fresh sauce without prior cleaning.

The best before date is also ignored in the affected branch. A former employee reports that the store continued to use moldy rolls even though they had expired three months ago.

But it gets worse. The reporters documented mice, feces and gnawed burger buns in the Burger King branch on Cologne’s Friesenplatz. Shortly before, burger buns from the same pack were on sale.

In a Burger King branch in Cologne-Lövenich, the reporter documents how employees wrongly sell burgers with meat as vegan. She herself is encouraged to use regular mayonnaise when making a vegan burger instead of the egg-free alternative.

The fast-food restaurant chain Burger King actually wanted to become a pioneer in not eating meat: In its 750 German branches, the company also offers a vegetarian counterpart for all beef burgers and for almost every other meat dish.

However, the term “vegan” is not really taken seriously in individual Burger King branches.

In a Munich branch of the “Schlossburger” franchise company, the undercover reporter observed similar shortcomings in the handling of vegan burgers. The “Plant Based Nuggets” were prepared in about the same fryer as the chicken nuggets. The company “Schlossburger” operates 112 fast food restaurants and is the largest restaurant partner of Burger King in Germany. In addition, this is the same franchisee that made headlines in 2014 together with managing director Ergün Yildiz.


Specifically, it is about individual branches of Burger King on Cologne’s Friesenplatz, in Cologne Lövenich, near Halle in Saxony-Anhalt, in Bernau near Berlin and in Munich.

“The allegations made are taken very seriously,” said Burger King at the German headquarters in Hanover. The restaurants shown in the article would be temporarily closed and checked carefully.

“We carry out regular audits to check each branch individually for our high standards,” explains the press office. In September, the company carried out an extraordinary external audit for all 750 Burger King restaurants in Germany.

After the revelations, Burger King wanted to know “immediately” how each individual branch was doing. “We have found areas where we need and want to improve. That’s why we have developed action plans – where necessary – and are intensifying our training culture,” the company continues. Burger King does not provide an answer as to how many branches were found to have defects.

Anyone who likes to eat at Burger King should always read recessions and customer reviews online. You can usually trust older entries that were published before the current hygiene scandal. You should be more careful, especially where accusations of hygiene and inadequate ingredients are repeated.

The pages of Google or Trustpilot are helpful.

In an emergency, customers should also speak to employees directly in the branch and clarify when individual products were last disposed of.

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