Yeah that’s right. McDonald’s uses real food, not “leftover parts” and they want you to know about it. That’s why they’ve set up a new area on their website called “Quality Food.” The goal is to help dispel myths about the quality of McDonald’s food. According to a recent AdAge article:

Some of the common assumptions it wanted to correct: that its hamburgers and chicken nuggets are made of “leftover parts”; that its milk shakes and ice cream contain lard; that its sausage patties contain additives that make people want to eat more; and that its cheese contains meat product.

The page allows you to click on any of their many ingredients, from beef to chicken to lettuce. With each ingredient, they print the answers to several “common” questions about that food.

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No word on how many hormones are given to the cows before they become beef, or how many additives or preservatives are added to the ground beef before it gets cut into patties by McDonald’s.

McDonald’s is also promising a closer look at their production process, vowing to go out into the fields with cameras, to show McDonald’s customers where their food originates (not available on the website yet, but coming soon).

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In the past few years, I’ve become increasingly critical of the levels of hormones, additives and preservatives that America fast food companies seem to rely on.  That being said, when it comes to the strategy of brand protection, this is a smart, pro-active approach by McDonald’s.

Why allow rumors and negativity about the quality of McDonald’s products to fester and spread online? It is wise for McDonald’s to address these issues head on. The fact that they are doing so on their own website also means they can set the agenda for what questions get asked/answered. This allows them proclaim their food to be quality while avoiding tough questions that they might face in a more open forum.

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