Friday, November 13, 2009

Food fight: Burger King franchisees sue chain

Burger King franchisees sued the hamburger company this week over its $1 double cheeseburger promotion, saying they're losing money on the deal and the company can't set maximum menu prices.

The National Franchise Association, a group that represents more than 80 percent of Burger King's U.S. franchise owners, said the $1 promotion forces restaurant owners to sell the quarter-pound burger with at least a 10-cent loss.

While costs vary by location, the $1 double cheeseburger typically costs franchisees at least $1.10, said Dan Fitzpatrick, a Burger King franchisee from South Bend, Ind. who is a spokesman for the association. That includes about 55 cents for the cost of the meat, bun, cheese and toppings. The remainder typically covers expenses such as rent, royalties and worker wages.

"New math, or old math, the math just doesn't work," Fitzpatrick said.

After testing the $1 deal in markets across the country, the discounted burger went on sale nationwide last month even though franchise owners, who operate 90 percent of the company's 12,000 locations, twice rejected the product because of its expense.

"The current management team has disregarded rights that Burger King franchisees have always had," Pennsylvania franchise owner Steve Lewis said in a statement.

Denise Wilson, a spokeswoman for the nation's No. 2 hamburger chain, said the Miami restaurant company believes the litigation is "without merit," particularly after an earlier appeals court ruling this year showing the company had a right to require franchise owners to participate in its value menu promotions.

Restaurants, especially fast-food chains, have been slashing menu prices because of the poor economy. Executives hope the deeply discounted deals will bring in diners who are spending less when they eat out, or opting to stay home altogether.

When the $1 double cheeseburger was announced this fall, analyst said it could increase restaurant visits by as much as 20 percent. But despite that boost, a Deutsche Bank analyst said as much as half of the gain recorded from increased traffic could be lost because customers were spending less when they ordered food.

The lawsuit was filed Tuesday in U.S. District Court in Southern Florida.

Burger King shares fell 18 cents, or 1 percent, to close at $17.12 Thursday.

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Degos disease or Dago disease

Cells in the linings of the walls of the medium and small veins and arteries under the skin swell when they become inflamed.

This causes the blood flow to be restricted.

Where this happens, spots (lesions) appear on the skin. They are small and red, slightly raised (we are building up a library of photos of Degos skin lesions on this web site: if you have any more photos, please let us know).

As they develop, the centre becomes dry and white (atrophic). Sometimes the spots itch.

Degos lesionsYou can see some typical lesions in the picture inset on the left and at the following site:

In some people, the disease stays at this stage and other symptoms do not develop. We know of one patient who was diagnosed in 1973 and is still well and working full-time.

Be aware that information on some sites is inaccurate . You will read statistics and numbers which might scare you - but they are often based on projections and on published case reports. There are lots of Degos patients whose cases haven’t been written up and who are alive and well.

There are also lots of confident assertions which just aren’t true! For example: “This disease affects mainly young men” - not in our experience! Or “The lesions don’t appear on the soles of the feet” - wrong again! Percentages and actual numbers can’t be right, as no-one has compared living patients until now. Take it all with a pinch of salt and add your experience to our site and to the data being collected in Dessau, Germany.

Our collective knowledge will make the difference between assertive inaccuracies on medical sites and clear truth on this Degos Disease site.

Most of us are leading full and normal lives. Some patients have a few lesions on the skin; others have hundreds. We don’t yet know if numbers are significant.

Sometimes the disease affects blood vessels in other parts of the body. Most commonly, the gut, the central nervous system or the eyes are involved.

Most case histories in the medical literature are of ‘worst case’ scenarios.

Detailed article about Degos Disease by Noah S Scheinfeld, MD, JD, FAAD.

Other names for Degos disease are:

* Malignant atrophic papulosis
* Köhlmeier - Degos disease
* Köhlmeier disease
* Degos - Köhlmeier disease
* Degos disease
* Degos syndrome
* Erythrokeratoderma en cocardes
* Thromboangiitis obliterans (courtesy:

Resources from Click Here