Hamburger eating contest sparks row in Shanghai

Updated: Apr 20, 2011, 13:04 PM IST

Shanghai: A hamburger restaurant in Shanghai has stirred an online controversy for its contests, one of which requires the participants to eat a seven-level, 2.3-kg hamburger in two hours, as they cannot go to the toilet during it.

As per the contest`s rules, the winners can have the 138-yuan-worth ($21.13) hamburger for free, but the challengers cannot leave their tables for two hours.

Various residents have complained on KDS, a popular city online platform, saying that they nearly vomited or had a stomach ache during the contest, which they believed was nothing but a promotional campaign to fascinate customers, Shanghai Daily reports.

They have also accused the restaurant owner of being unconcerned about health problems such a contest is causing to participants` health, considering it`s the quantity of food and strict regulations which prevent oneself to use toilet.

Participants, having failed in the contests, said that they nearly vomited while eating the giant hamburger made of meat, vegetable and bun. Some of them said they had stomach ache afterwards, allegedly caused by the food suspected of not being fresh.

An official of the restaurant, however, said that the eatery already had about 130 winners since the restaurant opened in September 2009 and all of them had left without paying the 138-yuan bill.

"Why are we being blamed if some challengers are not able to compete in the contest like others?" asked the official, Xu.

Besides the hamburger contest, the restaurant has also hosted another competition where participants have to eat a piece of 2-kg steak. Nobody has won it so far.

Local doctors, meanwhile, have warned swallowing such huge hamburgers may save people money but can cause major damage to their stomach requiring surgery!