McDonald's aims to slim down its 145-item menu
The fast-food giant apparently sees its attempt to be all things to all people as another of its problems.
First came word that the fast-food king was getting rid of Angus burgers, chicken selects, and fruit and walnut salads. Now Bloomberg News reports the Southern Style Biscuit, Caesar salads and McSkillet Burrito may be next to go. The report comes from an internal company email and indicates the House of Ronald realizes that being all things to all people leads to shoddy service and angry customers.
"They can’t make the food fast enough," restaurant consultant Richard Adams said in an interview with Bloomberg.
So far, however, as McDonald's cuts some items from the menus at its 14,000 U.S. locations, it keeps adding others. Among its new offerings are the Egg White Delight McMuffin, the Premium McWrap chicken sandwiches and three new Quarter Pounders. A McDonald's spokeswoman declined to comment to Bloomberg about the internal email.
Rivals such as Burger King (BKW) and Wendy's (WEN) have improved their menus in recent years and have taken some business from McDonald's. When it comes to taste, at lease one survey found consumers say Wendy's is best by a wide margin.
McDonald's CEO Don Thompson is under pressure from Wall Street to bolster U.S. same-store sales, which slumped 1.2% in the first quarter and gained 0.7% in April. But all the big fast-food rivals are having an especially hard time attracting cost-conscious customers who also are frequent patrons of fast-casual restaurants.
Shares of McDonald's have gained more than 15% this year, outperforming both Burger King's and Wendy's, indicating that investors are optimistic that Thompson's strategy will work.
The challenge that McDonald's faces isn't easy. Wall Street wants it to sell tasty food that the public wants, while a growing chorus of public officials want the chain to do more to fight the nation's obesity epidemic, particularly among children.
Meanwhile, at least it appears to be trying to slim down its own overweight menu.
Jonathan Berr has a small position in McDonald's. Follow him on Twitter @jdberr.
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First, things in this economic climate certainly are not going to grow. Going out to eat, even if it is McDonalds, is a luxury. No matter what this administration says, the US is hurting.
Second, I don't see it being a challenge for McDonalds when it comes to fighting obesity. Our public officials should be concentrating on what they were elected for......I am tired of these officials getting involved in issues that really don't concern them.....
145 items ?
I didn't realize they had that many choices on the menu because they all taste and look the same ...
If they take away the only items I eat, they will lose my business. I tried the new egg white delight a couple of days ago and it was NASTY. I had a southern style chicken biscuit this morning, its my favorite. The only other breakfast item I like there are the McSkillet Burritos. And go figure, the only salad I like from there is the caesar salad......WAY TO GO McDonalds, WAY TO GO!!
that's pretty much everything that's on their menu :)
Way too much sodium is added to their food. They don't even make the pancakes at the restaurants. They come in frozen and are just reheated.
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