I’ve felt compelled to create posts on several lawsuits claiming ‘cheating’ by major fast food players. Notably, Burger King was accused deceiving its customers with oversized ad photos of their menu items. Now, McDonald’s is says it’s enlarging its burgers!
The prototype ‘McD’s of the future’ now open in Austin, Texas.
A response to recent consumer complaints?
McDonald’s is often the first of the major Fast Food chains to address issues arising in the sector. So it is with those nagging stories we keep seeing about folks suing vendors for serving smaller, skimpier menu items than they show in their ads.
Burger King and Taco Bell stand out as recent litigation targets. It’s what happens when the Fast Food industry goes too far with shrinkflation. That’s the downsizing of food items while keeping the price the same. Even McD’s has been slammed (though not in the courts) for having shrunken its Big Mac at least 25 percent in diameter since it originally appeared.
McD’s CEO speaks out!
“In the US, in a number of markets, around the world, having a larger burger is an opportunity,” CEO Chris Kempczinski told CNN in an interview. “We’re working on that. That is something that you should expect in the future.”
“We’ve listened to our customers. And we understand their desire for larger, high-quality burgers that fill you up,” said Jo Sempels, who oversees markets where McDonald’s has licensed its brand.
The first of its kind
The return of the Double Big Mac (see photo, top of page) marks the beginning of the McD’s burger size revolution. Announced this past week, the 4-patty monster returns after a 5-year absence. The DBM is a logical candidate to kick off the Bigger Burger movement quickly. It contains all the usual Big Mac ingredients – just twice the patties. No new ingredients need be added to the McDonald’s pantry to fulfill that promise.
“We think we’re going to be able to deliver a great tasting large burger at a superior value to what [customers] can get anywhere else,” Kempczinski said.
More changes afoot
The McD’s CEO also announced that the chain will be pushing to increase the size of its global footprint to at least 50,000 locations by 2027. As of the end of last September, there were a little over 41,000 McD’s locations in all.
“With our current size and scale, some in this room might be questioning whether there is truly more space to grow,” said Manu Steijaert, the company’s global chief customer officer. “I’m here to tell you we see an incredible opportunity to grow the business by building more locations, getting us even closer to our customers.”
A test bed for the future
And don’t forget that McD’s recnently opened its first CosMc’s location not far from the chain’s Chicago world headquarters. The menu is heavy on beverages and snacks. Quite un-McDonald’s-like compared to the recent mainstream McMenu.
The company seems to be using CosMc’s as a test bed for new juice and coffee beverages which could challenge premium coffee outlets like Starbuck’s, and he doughnut-and-coffee brands that have moved into food and other beverages in the past few years.
Citing additional plans to increase the intensity of its marketing program and pushing fans to join it’s rewards program, McD’s is sparing no effort to remain first among burger joints in the future.
I wonder where all this pressure from McD’s on the market will leave the other burger chains? As I’ve said repeatedly over the past several years – there’s a Great Fast Food Sector Shakeout in the offing!
~ Maggie J.