McDonald’s keeps the recipe for its french fries secret for a reason, but a new and surprising piece of information has emerged about the fast food restaurant’s methods: its potatoes are grown by Bill Gates.
Well, sort of. According to data gathered by The Land Report, the Microsoft founder owns most of the farmland in Washington state, where a lot of McDonald’s potatoes are grown.
The fields he owns in the state reportedly add up to around 14,000 acres in total, with some of the potato fields used by McDonald’s to cultivate its famous fries so massive that they can be seen from space.
In a new report, NBC has revealed that in total, Bill and Melinda Gates own approximately 260,000 acres of land across 18 states, making them the largest private farmland owners in the United States. While their land is spread across swathes of the US, its total acreage is reportedly larger than the whole of New York City.
It’s not just McDonald’s either. Land owned by Bill and Melinda Gates – through their investment group and a variety of shell companies – is reportedly used by the world’s largest carrot producer, and is also home to companies growing everything from onions to cottons. But, unsurprisingly, it’s the Microsoft founder’s surprising role in the creation of everyone’s favourite french fries that has caught people’s attention.
Interestingly, Insider reports that Bill Gates is also one of a select few people to own a McDonald’s Gold Card, which means while the rest of us have to pay 99p for a small fries, the world’s fourth-richest man can taste the fruits of his farmland for free any time he wants.
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