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McDonald’s Canada Comes Clean

McDonald’s Canada Comes Clean

McDonald’s Canada has a new way to reach out to customers. The site is called “Our Food. Your Questions.”

In the first few days, a lot of people have been asking questions.

  • Kristy in Ontario wants to know what parts of the cow McDonald’s beef comes from. Answer: shoulder, chuck, rib eye, brisket, loin and round.
  • Chris in Winnipeg wonders if Chicken McNuggets are ground up waste chicken. Answer: only breast, leg and thigh meat.
  • Denise in Scarborough wants to know the least healthy, highest calorie thing on the menu. Answer: a large Rolo McFlurry
  • Gerard in Vancouver wants to know why today’s Big Mac is bigger than it was 20 years ago. Answer: They aren’t.
  • Kerri in Banff notices there is soy in many of their products and wants to know if they buy from Monsanto. Answer: No.

Questions can be posted in English or French, and the company’s Toronto office has a team of people providing the answers. At this point, only McDonald’s Canada has such a site. On the other hand, the parent company’s Facebook site is global and has over 20 million “likes.”

So far the company appears willing to deal with uncomfortable questions and to answer them repeatedly, though the brief answers would not satisfy anyone who wanted more than a sound bite. That is a smart marketing strategy likely to do more for the company’s reputation than a lot of glitzy schemes.

The 30-second marketing video they created to promote the site  reminds me of Domino’s Pizza, when that company made a campaign out of listening to customers’ complaints about how bad their pizzas were.

Whether “Our Food. Your Questions.” will have a similar effect on the increasing skepticism toward the company’s food, or its contribution to the epidemic of obesity and diet-related chronic diseases, has yet to be seen. What will be equally interesting to watch is whether making customer feedback easy will also have an impact on the farms and animals that supply its ingredients.

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Photo of poutine in a Quebec McDonald’s from jczart via Flickr Creative Commons

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116 comments

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8:19AM PDT on Jun 14, 2012

ohh dear..Beth K... I am very grateful that my vegan and vegetarian friends don't slather such words as you have..comparing carrion eaters to flies or announcing that meat eaters attract flies. They understand how backwoods disabling those sorts of words are, for anyone wishing to convince others to go Vegan. I hope that you realize how damaging your words are and alter your approach towards Vegan-izing others.

5:39AM PDT on Jun 14, 2012

Thank you Canada, for being open with people.
Being able to listen, to the public, helped Domino's become a better pizza company. I remember when I wouldn't have bought from them.

1:01AM PDT on Jun 13, 2012

more bull-shit from mc.donald's :(

12:44AM PDT on Jun 12, 2012

Transparency is good. Will they provide more vegetarian and vegan options?

6:16PM PDT on Jun 11, 2012

Beth k chill out people like you make vegans look mean and hateful.

5:21PM PDT on Jun 11, 2012

Thanks for the article.

1:43PM PDT on Jun 11, 2012

I wonder how honest those answers really are...

11:53AM PDT on Jun 11, 2012

Good point Antonia, like christians get to preach from the rooftops, but atheists are supposed to stay in the closet.

And Lynette, the fly analogy was poor. Flies eat carrion, and are only attracted to other carrion eaters, like you.

11:50AM PDT on Jun 11, 2012

i used to eat their chips until i found out they were coated in animal fat. transparency is a good thing. people will likely choose to keep eating their food but at least they will be informed.

11:47AM PDT on Jun 11, 2012

i hope this site will create greater consumer awareness, so people can make an informed choice

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