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McDonald's Insider Reveals Why Other Countries Have More 'Exciting' Menus Than the U.S.

The chain's domestic popularity is also a curse.

McDonald's restaurants outside of the United States are home to some of the chain's most interesting menu items, from the teriyaki-glazed burgers available in Japan to the spicy paneer patties customers can score in India. So why does McDonald's limit its American menus to just a few basic burgers, chicken items, and sides, while rolling out unique foods around the globe? A McDonald's insider just revealed the answer—and it's a doozy!

Mike Haracz, a former McDonald's corporate chef and TikToker (@chefmikeharacz) who frequently shares insider info and ordering tips, posted a new TikTok video this week that has racked up nearly 20,000 views. In it, Haracz discusses why McDonald's rarely introduces anything "exciting" to its American menus, while other countries have access to an array of special menu items. And it all comes down to the huge popularity the chain enjoys in its home country.

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"If you look at every other country, including Canada, Mexico, and every other place where there's a McDonald's, usually they have more creative menus. A big reason for that is they don't have the supply chain issues that McDonald's U.S. does in the case of volume," Haracz said.

He says that the majority of McDonald's business comes from its American market. So when the chain wants to launch a new menu item at all of its U.S. restaurants, the demand can potentially change the market value or completely deplete global supplies of an ingredient.

Haracz explained that McDonald's previously considered launching a new item that would have used fresh blueberries. However, the chain didn't go through with it because it would have "used up the world's resources of blueberries." It's easier for other countries to secure enough ingredient supplies to launch a new item because they represent a smaller part of McDonald's business.

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"If you go to Canada where there's a lot less volume for a national launch item, you could appropriately use that ingredient without having to worry about ruining the resources of that ingredient,"  he said. "So really the biggest reason why specifically the U.S. doesn't do anything super awesome and cool is because of the ingredient resources."

So any American fans hankering to try something special from the chain will likely need to do so when they're abroad. Even if McDonald's did test out something exciting in the States, Haracz believes that most Americans want to stick with the menu items they already know and love, rather than sampling new options.

"Most U.S. consumers just want it cheap and fast they don't care about a new type of flavor or new item," he added.

Zoe Strozewski
Zoe Strozewski is a News Writer for Eat This, Not That! A Chicago native who now lives in New Jersey, she graduated from Kean University in 2020 with a bachelor’s degree in journalism. Read more about Zoe
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