French Fry Frenzy

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Posted on April 18, 2016, at 6:50 p.m.; updated on April 25, 2016 at 9:00 p.m.
by Mackenzie Ross.

Last month, I stopped at a McDonald’s drive-through and perused the menu looking for my favorite item. Much to my dismay, the grilled chicken and ranch McWrap wasn’t on there. This change is part of McDonald’s new menu, which was created in hopes of boosting sales.

The McWraps were one of a few healthy food options sold at McDonald’s restaurants across the country. The company introduced the McWraps to appeal to younger buyers who are more health-conscious, but company sales continued to fall.

While I may not be able to order my beloved McWraps, french-fry lovers can rejoice: McDonald’s will now sell all-you-can-eat french fries! This July, a new 6,500-square-foot store will open in St. Joseph, Missouri, and offer the unlimited fries, ordering kiosks and more.

Courtesy of https://commons.wikimedia.org/
Courtesy of https://commons.wikimedia.org/

HowStuffWorks.com found that fries are the most popular menu item at McDonald’s; so, it’s no surprise the company is making headlines by offering its best product as “all you can eat.”

This bold move contrasts with other fast-food restaurants that currently dominate the market. In recent years, younger consumers have begun to expect healthier food without long wait times, and this expectation has come to be known as the “Chipotle effect.” Despite the fact that people have to pay on average $9 to $13, which is far more than traditional fast-food options, healthy fast food is all the rage.

With this trend in mind, it’s interesting that McDonald’s is going against the grain. The company is forsaking its healthier menu items to embrace what it’s famous for: french fries. As a general rule, companies should follow current trends when making business decisions, but in McDonald’s case, I applaud the company for focusing on its best product — even though it may be unhealthy.

The public relations and marketing departments for McDonald’s have an exciting and interesting task ahead of them as they try to convince consumers that unlimited french fries are a good idea. For now, they are doing a good job of garnering publicity for the coming menu change. And hey, all publicity is good publicity, right?

McDonald’s fans can look forward to the unlimited fries, and PR enthusiasts can watch this transition to learn from McDonald’s — whether it is successful or not. So, mark your calendars; there’s a fast-food storm a fryin’.

*Note: Since this blog was published, McDonald’s released a statement clarifying that the all-you-can-eat fries are only temporary for the new restaurant location.

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