McDonald’s Taking Steps to Offer Healthier Choices

Finally succumbing to pressure from its critics, the world’s largest restaurant chain announced it will offer healthier side dishes to go with their value meals in addition to fries. Choices will include fruit, salads, and/or vegetables. The types of fruit or vegies were not mentioned specifically.

In addition McDonald’s will only advertise water, milk and juice as an option to accompany kids’ Happy Meals. The restaurant giant made the declaration at the Clinton Global Initiative annual meeting on September 26 in New York.

Replacing the Fries with Fruit, McDonald's New Healthier Look

Replacing the Fries with Fruit, McDonald’s New Healthier Look

The decision is part of a wider trend by fast-food chains to respond to government and consumer pressure to help in the global fight against obesity. McDonald’s, often used as a symbol of the restaurant industry’s tendency towards pushing its empty-calorie and low-quality food, promised that all 20 of its global markets will be offering the healthier choices by the year 2020.

One of the more outspoken critics of the restaurant industry, The Center for Science in the Public Interest, is pleased with the company’s decision to go the route of more healthy choices. They still believe there is a lot more work to do to get the restaurant industry to offer even more healthful options.

“McDonald’s slow march toward healthier meals made a major advance today, but a long road lies ahead for the company,” CSPI said in a statement.

McDonald’s said that the change is part of an overall plan which it developed with the Alliance for a Healthier Generation, a group founded by the Clinton Foundation and the American Heart Association. Together these groups hope to raise awareness among consumers, improve customer’s access to more fruit and vegetables, and to help families, and especially children to make more informed eating lifestyle choices.

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