Pizza Hut are among one of a handful of restaurants (others being McDonald's, KFC, Pret a Manger and JD Wetherspoon) signed up to a pledge to tell customers how many calories are in their meals.
Newspapers are showing how little they know by going straight for McDonald's in their reports. At least customers at McDonald's usually to stick to one meal each. At Pizza Hut, most will order for four people and have it all to themselves, completely oblivious of what they're doing.
I've been a waiter for Pizza Hut on and off for six years. I've observed countless people ordering a large pizza, not realising the calorie content is through the roof. Way beyond any McDonald's meal.
This is done either through confidence and pride at how much they can eat, usually found in customers with the alpha-male tendency, or through uncertainty. To be on the safe side, always order more. You can always take it home and eat it on the tube, the second you have more room.
Maybe it's the myth that Pizza is healthy. It's made from 'fresh' (though not at Pizza Hut, despite what they inaccurately print on their takeaway boxes). It does have vegetables. Sometimes (powdered tomato puree with added water doesn't really count).
Pizzas at Pizza Hut are fried. They sit proofing in a pool of oil over-night before they're sprinkled with salt and starch based 'cheese' and pre-chopped toppings from a bag and thrown on a conveyer belt oven.
One large stuffed crust meat feast has 2903 calories. That's 116% of a man's entire daily intake, and 145% of a woman's.
One night working in the Streatham branch before it closed down, I served two quite obese women a meal deal designed for four to five people. They ate it all. Three starters, a large and a medium pizza and two desserts. The total calorie intake for the entire meal came to a colossal 6,161 calories! That was around 3,080 each! Something tells me they didn't wait 36 hours before they chowed down again either. The sad thing is, this wasn't unusual.
Here's a breakdown of what they ate:
Garlic bread with cheese - 554 calories
Chicken wings - 306 calories
Chicken strips - 303 calories
Large pan meat feast - 2,528
Medium pan hawaiin - 1,098 calories
A chocolate fudge cake each - 686 calories each
Total = 6,161 (divide by two)
This doesn't include the unlimited (and they took that really seriously) pepsi refills consumed throughout.
I don't know why it's taken so long for this to happen, given supermarkets have had to display calorie content by law for a long time now. Why aren't all restaurants obliged? It's still food consumption, it's still spurring obesity of those who don't get notice from their stomachs when they're full.
I also don't know why Pizza Hut are willingly giving out this information, given this will kill their sales significantly - providing the information is transmitted effectively. Most customers barely take the time to read the menu, they aren't about to read calorie small print.
Let's see. Maybe we'll see the gross ignorance perpetuated by Pizza Hut for the sake of profit finally come to an end.