‘Was it sabotage?’: Netizens weigh in on viral fast food chain’s ‘deep-fried towel’ incident

June 3, 2021 - 1:31 PM
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Composite photo shows Jollibee's Chicken Joy. (Jollibee/Facebook)

It’s nearly impossible to fry a towel that resembles a fried chicken, according to some social media users.

A local fast food chain recently announced that it will close one of its branches after a customer complained that their fried chicken turned out to be fried towel. A video of which went viral on social media platforms.

In a statement on Thursday, June 2, Jollibee said that it will temporarily close down its branch in Bonifacio Global City-Stopover to conduct an internal probe into the incident.

“We have directed the Jollibee Bonifacio-Stopover branch to close for three days starting tomorrow, June 3, to thoroughly review its compliance with procedures and re-train its store team to ensure that this will not happen again,” it said.

“We will also send out reminders to all stores to ensure the strict adherence to Jollibee’s food preparation systems,” it added.

The multinational company also assured the public that the brand had “developed and complied with food preparation systems to ensure that we deliver excellent quality products and customer satisfaction.”

“We will continue to endeavor to deliver on the high standards we have set for ourselves and our franchises,” Jollibee said.

The complaint

In a series of video, a customer shared that the Jollibee meal she ordered contained a deep-fried towel instead of the brand’s bestselling chicken meal.

“Ordered chicken for my son, while I was trying to get him a bite, I found it super hard to even slice. Tried opening it up with my hands and to my surprise a deep fried towel,” the user said.

She also wondered if the same batch of food items cooked at the same branch may have been contaminated.

“Now I can’t even think of the other chickenjoys na kasama while frying this. Having the same oil for how many hours after frying this FRIED TOWEL,” the customer said.

“Ano pa kaya kasabay ng mga chickenjoy natin? You may get your chickenjoy pero baka may kasabay nang towel. The essence of the towel contaminated the oil and the batter from the supplier so how many chickenjoys are affected? We won’t know,” she added.

How the public reacted

The post immediately circulated across Facebook, Twitter and even reached some communities in Reddit forum.

The keyword “Jollibee” became among the trending topics on Twitter Philippines with over 7,624 tweets.

While most reactions shared the same concern as the customer, some users raised the possibility of the act being intentional in the first place.

“I really want to know how the towel ended up being perfectly marinated, battered and fried,” one user said.

“It’s really impossible to happen. This is not an accident. This is a total sabotage. Ang mas disappointing dito ay sana inilapit nila ang complaint sa source or sa pinanggalingan ng product rather posting it on social media,” another user wrote.

“Impossible na hindi makita ng frier yan kasi iba ang texture niya kumpara sa totoong karne tapos naka pre-cut na yang part na yan. Economic sabotage talaga yan,” one user said.

Amid the criticisms, the incident also gave birth to hilarious memes on social media.

Screenshots of the customer’s footage showing the well-cooked “towel” even reached the international meme-world on Reddit.

A post about it on Reddit’s r/WTF, which boasts of over 6.6 followers, earned 39,700 upvotes.

“Someone ordered fried chicken and got a fried towel instead,” the user wrote.

It was also posted on Reddit’s r/memes, an online community for original memes with 15 million followers.

“Jollibee what have you done,” the user wrote.