McDonald's All Day Breakfast: Is This Just a Distraction?


For those of us who enjoy the guilty pleasure of a visit to McDonald's Golden Arches, a bevy of new choices may greet you soon when you decide to order a quick lunch or dinner. CEO Don Thompson recently hinted that all-day breakfast might be in the fast food chain’s future plans.

McDonald's already serves breakfast all day in select markets around the world but not in every store like rival fast food chain Jack In The Box. The hint of change comes amid other product and PR offensives as the fast food giant attempts to distract from criticism and perspectives about the healthiness of its products along with attempting to capture new consumer markets following reports of declining sales.

In March, McDonald's was criticized along with nearly 50 other major restaurant chains for failing to meet minimum nutritional standards in their children's meals. Every possible meal combination failed to meet the minimum standards set by U.S. Department of Agriculture and the National Restaurant Association's Kids LiveWell Program. Days before the study was released, McDonald's Director of Nutrition Cindy Goody defended the chain’s menu as healthy. She claimed that McDonald's had been making strides in providing healthy choices.

McDonald's recently released the McWrap nationally, a wrap sandwich that seeks to compete with meals offered by Subway, according to a leaked McDonald’s memo. The memos display a rare view of worry from within the fast food giant. They state in it that "McDonald's is currently not in the top 10 of millennials' (customers primarily ages 18-32) favorite restaurants."

The McWrap is marketed towards them, emphasizing choice and customization along with the implication that the product is healthy, even though certain combinations can balloon to 600 calories and 1,420 mg of sodium, more than half of the daily sodium intake recommended by health authorities.

The fast food titan has taken a blow in recent years. In 2012 it posted its first drop in sales since March of 2003. Although the drop was only 1.8%, the figure is seen a key statistic of how the operations side of the organization is doing currently as it separated income from sales, income from franchise fees, and other key business practices from the overall total income figures.

But this did not prove to be a temporary blip. Further piling on the bad news, sales continued to tumble throughout the first quarter of the fiscal year. To make matters even worse, McDonald's made hints that global sales would not recover in the month of April as well.

An all-day breakfast menu would be another offensive in the war to lure back customers who have departed for chains such as Chipotle Mexican Grill, Subway, and Panera Bread. Despite the logistical problems of essentially doubling their entire menu, the rewards could be vast if the outpouring of support from sections of the Internet is similar to real-life demand. But this is all conjecture until the Egg McMuffins and other breakfast foods are available all day, everyday at your local McDonald's. Until then you will have to wake up early to get a hold of a McDonald’s breakfast.