Fat Profits

January 13, 2008
by Joe Keohane
Conde Naste Portfolio

Mississippi is prime Hardee's country. A whopping 30.6 percent of its residents are obese, according to the nonprofit group Trust for America's Health. Two-thirds of Hardee's locations are in small towns, mostly in the Southeast and Midwest. During the past few years, CKE Restaurants, the parent company of Carl's Jr. and Hardee's, has employed an audacious go-for-bloat approach that defies just about everything you've come to assume about the business of modern fast food. They have a corporate philosophy that says to hell with the health police. CKE pushes gluttony to new extremes and is changing America's attitude toward eating.

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