Not So Fast

Fast food is hardly recognizable from those days when the jingle was “47₵ for a 3-course meal, At McDonald’s, that’s a steal.”

The fast-food innovator is waxing nostalgic as it celebrates the 40th Anniversary of its Happy Meal. It is bringing back Teenie Beanie Babies, a Furby, Hello Kitty, Cowboy McNugget, and Red Power Ranger. The little red box, AKA Happy Meal, has been identified as the beginning of a trend of obese children. But, the food can be the side. The experience counts for a lot except for the calories. McDonald’s CEO-before his recent demise-described the happy meal as “This iconic red box creates lasting memories for billions of families annually across the world.” The marketing position is that if you love your child, you’ll take them.

The Instagrammable moments of the joy of unboxing could be put to good use. Perhaps the toys in the meals could shock us to look at what’s happening. The toys could represent the end results of the meals. How about an obese doll, or a Power Ranger wielding a knife to commemorate Popeye’s successful chicken sandwich and the challenges of obtaining one.  

Another toy could be a tiny menu blackboard to draw meaningless numbers on…like the calorie counts we were so sure would curtail purchases of the most-unhealthy options. The first year that menu boards had calorie counts, customers chose menu items that lowered calorie counts per visit by 63 calories. Now purchases are only 20 calories lower than before calories were mentioned.

Written by Margaret Pendleton & published with permission.

Featured Image by XUNO. on Unsplash

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