Fast Foods

Fast foods are relatively inexpensive foods that are prepared and served quickly. The fast-food industry had its beginnings around the mid-twentieth century, and it grew tremendously during the last three decades of the twentieth century. Growth of the fast-food industry is projected to be even greater outside the United States during the twenty-first century.

The most common type of U.S. fast-food restaurant specializes in a meal consisting of a hamburger, French fries, and a beverage. Examples include McDonald's, Burger King, and Wendy's. Some, such as Kentucky Fried Chicken, specialize in chicken; some, such as Subway, provide sandwiches; and others, such as Taco Bell, provide Americanized ethnic foods. Outside of the United States, these fast-food eateries serve some of the standard American dishes, such as hamburgers, but they may also serve regionally popular items. There are also fast-food restaurants in other countries that specialize in providing ethnic foods, such as soups in Japan or crepes in France.

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