McDonald's Bandera Burger stirs controversy

McDonald's Bandera Burger causes commotion in Norway, Ukraine and Russia

McDonald's new Bandera burger, which was introduced at restaurants of the chain in Oslo, Norway, sparked criticism on social media in Norway itself, in Ukraine, and in Russia.

McDonald's sells Bandera burgers in Europe

Many assumed that the fast food chain that suspended its businesses in Russia has thus expressed its support for Ukraine, where Stepan Bandera* is considered a national hero.

However, it turned out that the Bandera Burger has nothing to do with the Ukrainian Nazi collaborator.

"This stands for Bandera homestyle beef. The burger, in addition to the meat patty, has a burger bun, Norwegian salt and pepper, cheddar cheese, nacho chips, Batavia salad, pickled onions, guacamole and Mexican Pico de Gallo sauce," Norwegians say.

This "news" is at least three years old. The Norwegian Bandera Burger has nothing to do with the Ukrainians. The burger has a reference to the Dominican beef dish. It could also be a reference to the word "flag" in Spanish, or a place in Texas where they breed cows.

As a matter of fact, the burger called Bandera appeared in 2018. The word 'bandera' translates as 'flag' from Spanish (this is a Mexican burger). In addition, one may come across Bandera burger in many McDonald's restaurants in the Western hemisphere. Therefore, there are no Ukraine insinuations in this campaign.

In November 2021, the Ukrainian diaspora in Poland was outraged when another global fast food chain, Burger King, launched a Gaudomor burger in Poland.

According to the advertisement, the Gaudomor burger contains "a large roll, double beef, three pieces of Gouda cheese, mustard, and fried onions."

Even though the name of the burger referred to Gauda cheese, many Ukrainians assumed that it was related to Holodomor (aka the Great Famine in Soviet Ukraine from 1932 to 1933 that killed millions of Ukrainians). The Ukrainian diaspora of Poland demanded that Burger King should rename the burger.

*Leader of OUN-UPA, an extremist organization, banned in Russia

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Author`s name Alexander Shtorm
Editor Dmitry Sudakov