A New York man is suing McDonald's and Wendy's over misleading adverts that he says make their burgers look much bigger than they actually are. Pictured, a McDonald's burger in marketed materials, left and in reality, right
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Big Mac and lies? New York man sues McDonald’s and Wendy’s for $50M over size of their burgers as he claims they look bigger in adverts than reality

  • A New York man is suing McDonald’s and Wendy’s over misleading adverts that he says make their burgers look much bigger than they actually are
  • Lawsuit against McDonald’s and Wendy’s says the burgers in the marketing are at least 15% larger than they are in real life 
  • Class-action lawsuit accuses fast food giants of unfair, deceptive trade practices
  • Justin Chimienti seeks $50m in damages for himself and other duped customers 
  • Chains have not commented on case which uses complaints from social media

A man from New York is suing McDonald’s and Wendy’s for what he says are misleading adverts that make their burgers look much bigger than they actually are.

Justin Chimienti thought the Big Mac he bought at McDonald’s and the Bourbon Bacon Cheeseburger he bought at Wendy’s would be as big and juicy as advertised.

He says they were not, and now he is suing the fast-food chains.

Chimienti sued McDonald’s and Wendy’s on Tuesday for $50million on behalf of himself and other customers, accusing them of defrauding their clientele with ads that make burgers appear larger than in reality.

A New York man is suing McDonald's and Wendy's over misleading adverts that he says make their burgers look much bigger than they actually are. Pictured, a McDonald's burger in marketed materials, left and in reality, right

A New York man is suing McDonald’s and Wendy’s over misleading adverts that he says make their burgers look much bigger than they actually are. Pictured, a McDonald’s burger in marketed materials, left and in reality, right

The lawsuit also takes aim at Wendy's, pictured left in sumptuous marketing pictured, and right, the disappointing reality

The lawsuit also takes aim at Wendy’s, pictured left in sumptuous marketing pictured, and right, the disappointing reality

The proposed class action filed in Brooklyn federal court is similar to a lawsuit filed in March, by the same three law firms representing Chimienti, against Burger King in Miami.

Chimienti said McDonald’s and Wendy’s use undercooked beef patties in ads, making the patties appear 15% to 20% larger than what customers get.

The complaint said meat shrinks 25% when cooked, and quoted a food stylist who said she has worked for McDonald’s and Wendy’s and prefers using undercooked patties because fully-cooked burgers look ‘less appetizing.’

The companies’ adverts are ‘unfair and financially damaging consumers as they are receiving food that is much lower in value than what is being promised’, the complaints state.

A McDonald's Big Mac is pictured in some of the company's delicious marketing photographs

A McDonald’s Big Mac is pictured in some of the company’s delicious marketing photographs

Another social media user posted a photo of a McDonald's burger that looks nothing like what is promised in pictures

Another social media user posted a photo of a McDonald’s burger that looks nothing like what is promised in pictures 

The ‘actions are especially concerning now that inflation, food, and meat prices are very high and many consumers, especially lower income consumers, are struggling financially,’ they add.

Chimienti, who lives in Suffolk County, said both chains ‘materially’ overstate burger sizes, while Wendy’s also inflates the amount of toppings.

‘Defendants’ actions are especially concerning now that inflation, food, and meat prices are very high and many consumers, especially lower income consumers, are struggling financially,’ the complaint said.

‘It’s looking a little sad… not like the picture,’ one YouTube reviewer, mentioned in the lawsuit, said referencing a Wendy’s Bourbon Bacon Cheeseburger.

Plenty of people take time to post their disappointing comparisons on social media

Plenty of people take time to post their disappointing comparisons on social media 

A selection of McDonald's burgers are pictured in marketing materials put out by the company

A selection of McDonald’s burgers are pictured in marketing materials put out by the company

‘It’s going to be a small burger folks. I am just telling you straight up what to expect so you won’t be disappointed like me,’ said another.

McDonald’s and Wendy’s did not immediately respond to requests for comment. A lawyer for Chimienti had no immediate additional comment.

The lawsuit seeks unspecified compensatory and punitive damages for alleged breaches of contract since May 2016 and violations of consumer protection laws nationwide.

In an April 28 conference call with analysts, McDonald’s Chief Executive Chris Kempczinski said lower-income consumers probably faced ‘increased value sensitivity’ as rents and gas prices rise.

Meanwhile, Wendy’s CEO Todd Penegor told analysts on May 11 that ‘inflation is being noticed by the consumers.’

Burger King, part of Restaurant Brands International Inc , has yet to formally respond to the Miami lawsuit.

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