Restaurant operators have spent 2010 in wait-and-see mode. The economy seems to have survived the financial collapse of 2008—survived being used quite literally here, as in, not died—and is even slowly growing. But consumers are still pinching pennies, and staying afloat in the restaurant industry remains about as difficult as ever.
Media measurement technology firm General Sentiment released its newest brand analysis, the Fall 2010 Fast Food Industry Report. The report highlights the brands that made the most significant media impact online between September and November. Despite declining nearly 20 percent since the summer, Starbucks still topped General Sentiment’s Impact Value rankings, more than doubling the totals of second and third place brands McDonald’s and Burger King.
Following food safety concerns recently highlighted by the largest egg recall in U.S. history, the Humane Society of the United States (HSUS) submitted a shareholder resolution Wednesday urging Oak Brook, Illinois–based McDonald’s Corporation to create a plan for transitioning its U.S. locations to cage-free eggs. Scientific studies have documented that cage-free egg facilities have significantly lower rates of Salmonella contamination than cage facilities.
McDonald’s Corp. said it plans to roll out an oatmeal item to its more than 14,000 restaurants on Jan. 3.
Fruit & Maple Oatmeal, which has been in test since earlier this year, will be available all day long, with or without brown sugar, for $1.99. The item contains 290 calories with sugar and 260 calories without it.
Whether you call them French fries, chips, or frites, whether they come thick-cut, crinkled, straight, or curly, fries are a staple of the American diet, most notably at quick-serve restaurants.
There is an answer to the age-old question of which came first, the chicken or the egg.
It’s definitely the egg—at least when it comes to breakfast. Few morning menus are without them. But these days, chicken and another popular poultry protein, turkey, are increasingly popping up on a.m. menuboards at quick-service and fast-casual restaurants.
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Reporting by Blair Chancey, Sam Oches, Daniel P. Smith, Robin Van Tan, Barney Wolf & Lori Zanteson
1. BK Sold to Brazilian Investors
Becoming the decade’s biggest restaurant buyout, No. 3 burger chain Burger King Corp. was acquired by 3G Capital, a New York firm backed by Brazilian investors, for $3.3 billion in September. —BC
2. The Food Truck Obsession
Remember the tagline, “You Deserve a Break Today”? If you’re like me, you probably look back fondly on those days when McDonald’s made it a mantra. The line signaled the spirit of the industry at the time—people really enjoyed going to fast food restaurants, and quick serves really provided a needed break from the stress and boredom of the everyday.
Twenty years ago this month, McDonald’s Corp.and Environmental Defense Fund (EDF) embarked on a groundbreaking collaboration to change the way environmental progress is achieved. Since then, both EDF and McDonald’s have maintained partnership and collaboration as key ingredients to achieving sustainable solutions and continuous improvement around environmental innovation.
This week, McDonald’s USA is introducing the newest addition to the core McCafé beverage line Caramel Mocha—a blend of caramel, mocha, and espresso topped with whipped cream and caramel drizzle, offered hot or iced. The company’s first venture into the seasonal beverage market, McDonald’s USA is launching McCafé Caramel Mocha nationwide just in time for the holiday season to further build on the success of the core McCafé line.