It’s been a long, strange road paved with frozen beef patties, but it looks as if the golden era of ridiculously cheap fast food may be coming to an end. McDonald’s is quietly
removing the Double Cheeseburger and the McChicken sandwich from its dollar menu
. The cost of selling meat at such a low price is just too high, according to an article from the Associated Press. Wholesale food prices have jumped 8.7 percent this year, and beef, chicken, and veal costs have increased the fastest. Restaurants haven’t quite kept pace with price increases—they’ve bumped their menu prices up just 4.2 percent during the same period—but it’s only a matter of time before the costs get passed on.

“This is the most challenging environment for restaurant operators regarding food price inflation on the wholesale level for almost 30 years,” Hudson Riehle, senior vice president of research at the National Restaurant Association, tells the AP.

Some would argue that, at $1.19, McDonald’s Double Cheeseburger is still too cheap, when you factor in the environmental and health costs.

Maybe it’s time for McDonald’s to reconsider that veggie burger.

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