The other night, I was watching my favorite movie Super Size Me on the cable. It was my second time to see it: the first time I saw it in the theater as part of my graduate course requirements (I'm studying Public Health). Anyways, the movie reminded me of a book that I also read when I saw the movie for the first time: Fast Food Nation by Eric Schlosser. Both the movie and the book offer a variety of interesting stories about McDonald's with a view to address food and nutrition-related issues, e.g. obesity, in the US today from sociological perspectives.
My favorite episode about McDonald's in the Schlosser's book is about Mickey D's famous French Fries. I did not know this, but originally McDonald's was requiring its restaurants to fry french fries with beef oil because they taste better than with vegetable oil. Somehow information about this "secret ingredient" was transmitted to India, where a group of Hindus got pissed off, went out on the street and started protesting against McDonald's. Their protest grew so big that McDonald's apologized and announced that beef oil would be switched to vegetable oil.
I do support those who view that McDonald's continues to market "bad foods", particularly to low-income families with kids, for profit-making. It is surprising to know how many McDonald's restaurants are located in Harlem and Washington Heights areas.
Although I do not eat at MacDonald's any more, I must admit that there are a couple of McDonald's burgers that I really liked during my past travels to other countries. These burgers were originally invented by McDonald's to cater to populations of a specific country and they are sold only within that country. For example, I liked Teriyaki McBurger which is sold only in Japan. At the Dubai International Airport in the United Arab Emirates, I ate McArabia: it is a sandwich with chicken patties, "dressed with Arabian flat-bread." It was good, too. I'd say, Mickey D's may not be culturally competent, but certainly good at "hypnotizing" tongues of global populations!