Posts tagged ‘Vegan’

October 2, 2012

McDonald’s should consider a vegetarian menu in America

English: The mdonalds logo from the late 90s

English: The mdonalds logo from the late 90s (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

By Krista Brooks

Published September 5, 2012 – The Daily 49er

http://www.daily49er.com/opinion/mcdonald-s-should-consider-a-vegetarian-menu-in-america-1.2757314#.UGpm_U3A-Gk

McDonald’s Corp. announced it will be opening two vegetarian-only restaurants in India next year.

The fast-food chain is famous for its beef hamburgers, which are not an easy sell in India.

There are currently only 271 McDonald’s restaurants in India and more than 33,500 worldwide. That is less than one percent of the company’s locations.

These new meatless outlets will be set in the Sikh holy city of Amritstar and near the Hindu Vaishno Devi shrine in Katra.

According to a 2001 census, about 80 percent of India’s population is Hindu and more than 13 percent are Muslim. Due to religious dietary restrictions, people of the Hindu faith do not consume beef and Islamic followers avoid pork.

With a wide population of vegetarians, McDonald’s has changed its menus to reflect more of the region’s demands. The Big Mac was altered to the Maharaja Mac, which is made with chicken patties in replace of beef.

This was a good alternative to beef, until customers found that the fast-food chain was seasoning the fries and other products with beef flavoring.

McDonald’s apologized and changed its ingredients to avoid another dispute.

The company also donated money to Hindu foundations and other groups in 2002 to patch things up for its mistake. Now, the company is taking the next step.

The McDonald’s chain is trying to reach out to the Indian population to accommodate their dietary needs.

In the United States, three percent of all beef consumption is made up from McDonald’s.

Without beef, the fast-food restaurants have to be creative in adapting new menu items.

According to the Vegetarian Timesstudies show almost 30 million people in America follow a vegetarian diet.

McDonald’s is being progressive in accommodating India and offering options for diverse consumer needs other than its quick-eats from the dollar menu.

Offering a vegetarian option in America could feed even more than the several billions McDonald’s says it has served.

Last summer, I worked at a cold storage where more than half of my customers asked for non-beef or non-pork meals. It’s safe to say there are plenty of people out there following a vegetarian diet.

McDonald’s is a large corporation with many resources.

Taking the extra step to help accommodate religious diets is admirable. They will reap the benefits of extra customers,an audience that will now have McDonald’s as a food option.

After this progressive move in India, McDonald’s should consider opening a few meat-free restaurants in America or add a separate menu with meatless items.

Krista Brooks is a junior journalism student and the assistant opinions editor for the Daily 49er.

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