Applebee's Swats Trans-Fat

Yup, Applebee’s is the latest standard American restaurant to drop trans-fat. More from The Seattle Times:
Restaurant-chain operator Applebee's International Inc. said Thursday that it is no longer using trans fat frying oil at its more than 1,800 domestic restaurants.


Trans fat is made when hydrogen is added to liquid cooking oils to harden them for baking or a longer shelf-life. The process turns them into "partially hydrogenated oils", which may increase the risk of heart disease, stroke, diabetes and other ailments.
The company, which started looking for replacement oils three year ago, is now using a blend of two soybean oils it claims do not compromise the taste, texture or quality of its food.

"After extensive testing with our guests, we found that our foods cooked in zero trans fat oil still have the great taste out guests have come to expect from Applebee's," said Dave Goebel, the company's chief executive officer, in a statement. "In some cases, the oil even enhances the flavor of the menu item."
This is a little surprising because late last year Applebee’s was one of the restaurants opposed to New York City’s ban on trans-fat. I blogged about it here, Trans Fat is Toast:
The city's move has been opposed by representatives of chain restaurants, such as Domino's and Applebee's, and by restaurant industry groups. Charles Hunt, executive vice president of the New York State Restaurant Assn., said he hoped to fight the ban through legislative or legal channels.
Now I wonder, did they jump on the ban-bandwagon because it is the socially responsible thing to do, or, is it just a good P.R. move?
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