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The Gods of Retail: In-N-Out Burger


The Christian way to Indulge in the sin of gluttony.

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In-N-Out Burger is a popular chain of hamburger eateries in California, Nevada, and Arizona, 140 strong.

Harry Snyder and his wife, Esther, founded In-N-Out in 1948. They've survived for as long as they have thanks in no small part to a reputation for quality and fresh food.

There are no freezers, microwaves or heat lamps at any In-N-Out location. The food is never frozen, meals are prepared to order, the fries are cut by hand onsite, and the shakes are made from real ice cream.

Allan Hickok, a senior research analyst who tracks the restaurant industry for US Bancorp Piper Jaffray told the New York Times that In-N-Out is considered by many as a sort of "unchain." '"They have a kind of quirky appeal that's made them a strong regional player," he said.

As a private company that doesn't have to answer to shareholders, In-N-Out can do things a little differently than, say, McDonald's (MCD).

Thirsty? How about a little John 3:16 with that Diet Coke?

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The hamburger and cheeseburger wrappers point to Revelation 3:20: "Behold, I stand at the door, and knock: If any man hear my voice, and open the door, I will come in to him, and will sup with him, and he with me."

And sup they will - especially with In-N-Out Burger's Double-Double: 2 burgers, 2 slices of cheese, 670 calories, 41 grams of fat, and topped off with a heapin' helpin' of Nahum 1:7.

According to the Gilroy Dispatch, when Harry Snyder died in 1976, his son Rich took over. Rich started the practice of referencing the Bible on the chain's packaging in the 1980s. According to Dean Atkins, a regional manager for the chain, "After [Rich] passed, we kept on doing it out of respect for him. It was just something he wanted to do."

It's not for everyone, though.

"Sorry," Chloe Etienne told California's Contra Costa Times. "I believe in a separation between church and food."

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