Ever wonder why McDonald’s food in commercials looks like food, but McDonald’s food in real life looks like a cat got sick? It’s because food stylists, photographers, and retouchers spend HOURS making the food in ads look edible.

[youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oSd0keSj2W8&feature=player_embedded]

In this McDonald’s-sponsored spot, a distractingly Canadian marketing person reveals the intense, surgically precise process that makes burgers TV-ready. Compared even with the suspiciously handsome burger she just happened to buy at a local McD’s, the difference is stark. It’s like this Dove ad but for food.

In the company’s defense, they do offer a pretty convincing explanation of why they can’t just shoot a regular real-life burger for their ads: They have to bring all the ingredients to the front, so you know exactly what you’re getting! Hidden pickles might be a good name for a raunchy Tumblr, but they don’t help sell burgers. At least, that explanation SOUNDS convincing, until you think hard about the fact that they ALSO couldn’t just shoot regular real-life burgers because then you would know that they look gross.