Business Spotlight: McDonald’s Part 2

Category : Business

Unlocking Word Meanings

Read the following words/expressions found in today’s article.

  1. innovate / ˈɪn əˌveɪt / (v.) – to have new ideas or new ways of doing things

    The company has been successful for over 50 years because it keeps innovating its products and services.

  2. prevail / prɪˈveɪl / (v.) – to be successful or win in a game, court case, competition, etc.

    Our team prevailed, beating all the other teams to take the number one spot.

  3. so-called / ˈsoʊˈkɔld / (adj.) – referring to a name that’s commonly used for something

    These so-called superfoods are rich in vitamins.

  4. advocate / ˈæd vəˌkeɪt / (n.) – a person or group that publicly supports a cause, idea, policy, etc.

    Animal rights advocates say the government needs to do more to fix the local cat problem.

  5. voice / vɔɪs / (v.) – to express one’s feelings or opinions about something

    Many people voiced their concerns about the new policy.


Read the text below.

Continued from Part 1…

Around this time, McDonald’s innovated many of its best-known products, including the Filet-O-Fish (1962), the Big Mac (1968), and the Egg McMuffin (1972). The first “drive-thru” also arrived in 1975, and Happy Meals were created in 1979. The first Japanese location was established in Mitsukoshi Department Store, in Tokyo’s Ginza district, in 1971.

McDonald’s success continued throughout the ’80s, when it prevailed in the so-called Burger Wars among itself, Burger King and Wendy’s. Revenues rose again in the early 2000s, thanks to successes like the McFlurry and the youth-focused “I’m lovin’ it” campaign. However, criticisms also began to rise, particularly from health advocates who continue to voice concerns about its unhealthy products.

The 2010s have seen yet more innovations in the McDonald’s format. For instance, the all-day breakfast option, launched in 2015, has significantly improved sales in the U.S., and McDonald’s opened its biggest outlet ever, the size of a soccer stadium, for the 2012 London Olympics. Nonetheless, with so many more strong competitors on the rise, how long will we still be lovin’ it? (Jasmin Hayward)

This article was provided by The Japan Times Alpha.

Viewpoint Discussion

Enjoy a discussion with your tutor.

Discussion A

  • In the ’80s, McDonald’s prevailed in the so-called Burger Wars among itself, Burger King, and Wendy’s. In your country, who are McDonald’s toughest competitors? If a new Burger Wars were held this year, who do you think would win? Why? Discuss.
  • McDonald’s has been very innovative over the years, creating many popular menu items and launching a successful all-day breakfast option in the US. In your opinion, what should the company do next to maintain its success (ex. focus even more on food delivery, collaborate with another famous company to create new menu items)? Why? Discuss.

Discussion B

  • Health advocates continue to voice their concerns about McDonald’s unhealthy products. Do you think the company should make changes to its menu based on these concerns? Why or why not? Discuss.
  • McDonald’s innovated the Filet-O-Fish in 1962, the Big Mac in 1968, and the Egg McMuffin in 1972. In your opinion, what’s the best item on the McDonald’s menu? What’s the worst? Why? Discuss.
Category : Business