If you follow a good amount of bloggers, you probably know that last weekend was one of the biggest blogging conferences out there. BlogHer 2012 was held in New York City and while my experience as a whole would be another LONG post, I decided that I wanted to talk to you all about one of the most life-changing things that happened to me. I mean, besides being able to meet The Pioneer Woman in person. I’m talking about my breakfast with McDonalds.
Friday morning of the conference, I was blessed to be apart of something truly special. McDonalds had been on a nationwide “listening tour” where they sat in rooms with their customers and got feedback, questions, statements and ideas straight from the folks that frequent their restaurants every day. This breakfast was the last stop and they were eager to share what they’ve learned with us, and find out what bloggers may have to add to the conversation. We spoke in ample amounts that morning.
McDonald’s also wanted to address their new Favorites Under 400 Calories Menu that has hit their stores. If you own a television and have been watching the Olympics, i’m sure you’ve seen advertisements for it. While the menu did feature some tried and true items, like nuggets and ice cream, it also highlighted items I was happy to see: a fruit and walnut platter, oatmeal, blueberry granola yogurt parfait, and my personal favorite, blueberry pomegranate smoothie. The list was ample; way longer than I had thought it would have been. Also, you could easily see that a full meal could be made from these items. A full healthy meal. This blew my mind immediately.
During the question and answer session, valid points were thrown back and forth from bloggers, to chefs, and also to the President of McDonalds, Jan Fields. Bloggers inquired about the possibility of a Veggie burger (they’ve tried it but it wasn’t a hit), to reforming McDonalds establishments to have outside playgrounds, and also praising them for recognizing and supporting the local American farmer.
Fact: McDonalds is the leading consumer of American apples.
While talks didn’t get too heated, we got our points across and tweeted away while doing so. I personally had at least 3 followers respond to my real-time tweets about the breakfast. One follower pleaded that McDonalds bring back a veggie burger so she doesn’t have to “go to the king” for it, while others agreed that the Asian Chicken Salad should be a year-round option on the menu (or at least provide us with edamame as a regular side!). Our voices were heard. Now it’s in their court to make the change.
Why is this important to the frugal savvy crowd? Whether you want to admit it or not, you grew up with McDonalds. It’s an American staple. While we now know how to create our own favorite meal at home, McDonalds restaurants are everywhere. We stay away because of budget and health, but what if both were not a factor anymore? What if one of the biggest fast food restaurants was able to give us fresh fruit, a full healthy breakfast, or a meal dedicated to those who are gluten free or suffer from Celiac Disease? Would our frugal living change? If anything, it would give us the option of frequenting the restaurant again, and being excited about it, just like when you were little.
Want to keep this discussion going, or have something constructive to say to McDonalds? Come join the Family Arches Community and express your thoughts and ideas.