Premium Essay

Mcdonalds and Obesity

In: Business and Management

Submitted By tyler1392
Words 894
Pages 4
Since 2001, McDonalds and many other fast food restaurants have had to defend themselves against lawsuits alleging that their food has been the sole contributing factor for a customer’s obesity or obesity related medical conditions. The lawsuits began with several cases represented by Samuel Hirsh. The first, which was later dropped, was concerning a customer, Caesar Barber, who was a maintenance worker claiming to have become obese from eating at McDonalds and other fast food chain restaurants. While that case was later dropped, Hirsh was back in court with the same allegations except this time he was representing two teenagers: Ashley Pelman and Jazlyn Bradley.
The teens claimed to have eaten fast food from McDonalds regularly because they believed the food was a healthy choice. They eventually become obese and developed obesity related diseases, including diabetes, coronary heart disease, high blood pressure and elevated cholesterol intake. The complaint alleged that McDonalds should have known that is food would cause obesity and related medical conditions in American children and that it deceived customers by offering unreasonably unsafe food items, engaging in deceptive marketing, sales and advertising and failing to warn consumers about the dangers of its products. Additionally, since Pelman and Bradley were minors, Hirsh claimed that they could not be accountable for their food choices.
The outcome, however, was not what the plaintiffs expected. The plaintiffs could not prove that McDonalds products were so completely unhealthy that they were either outside the reasonable consumption standards for consumers or too dangerous to be consumed. McDonalds, and other fast food restaurants, are not solely responsible for the obesity epidemic that is ever-developing. Instead, personal choices and responsibility, declining activity levels, medical history and

Similar Documents

Free Essay

Mcdonalds and Obesity

...Option #2: McDonald’s and Obesity Lauren Derman CSU-Global Campus International and Multi-Cultural Marketing MKG400-1 Michael Aubry July 28, 2016 Option #2: McDonald’s and Obesity Obesity, as it relates to fast food, has been tied together in controversy for many years. It is an uphill battle that continues to occur throughout the globe; however, one fast food restaurant, in particular, has been blamed for contributing to the obesity problem especially in young people as this epidemic continues to grow. In this paper, we will discuss the problem as it relates to the case study written specifically about McDonalds and their influence on the explosion of child obesity. Additionally, we will examine further a few of the most important questions regarding the case as it relates to the Ronald McDonald mascot, the merits of law that would require warning labels or health messages within the commercials for the corporation, as well as the current attitude towards the rising issue of obesity and the various approaches to solving the problem. Ronald McDonald Vs Joe Camel As the problem of obesity continues to debilitate our youth and contribute to life-threatening illnesses and diseases, it is very easy for stakeholders and consumers such as parents point the finger at Ronald McDonald. The vibrantly dressed corporate mascot most recognized for his iconic clown makeup and big red shoes has recently been compared to that of Joe Camel his extreme opposite in marketing advertisements...

Words: 876 - Pages: 4

Premium Essay

Case Study 3 Mcdonalds and Obesity

...Case Study 4 McDonalds 1) How should Mac respond when ads promoting healthy lifestyle featuring Ronald McDonald are equated with Joe Camel and Cig ads? Should Mac eliminate Ronald McDonald in its ads? I do not believe it is necessary to eliminate Ronald McDonald as the mascot. The comparison to Joe Camel is rather unfair. Although McDonalds uses Ronald to market its unhealthily to children, it is not the same as smoking and getting addicted to cigarettes (, 2016). McDonalds should used Ron’s image in a different way, promoting healthy food and activity, less focus on the food even and focus on charitable work. Ronald is among top 25 mascots of all times. (, 2016) Ronald McDonalds should make visits to schools to educate students about the importance of eating healthy and staying active. Even addressing moderation of unhealthy foods and portions control. This will help to improve Ronald image in a positive way as the mascot. 2) Discuss the merits of the law proposed by France that would require fast-food companies either to add a health message to commercials or to pay 1.5 % tax on their ad budget. Propose a strategy for McDonald's to pay the tax or add health message and defend your recommendation. The French law will force food marketers to choose between adding a health message to commercials and paying a 1.5 percent tax on their ad budgets to fund healthy-eating messages. (, 2016) Other bans may also be placed on using celebrities...

Words: 1069 - Pages: 5

Premium Essay

Mcdonald’s and Obesity

...Case Overview This case study focused on McDonalds international struggle towards improving it’s image as it relates to obseity trends rising globally. The primary issue is that governments and health advocates fear that the number of obese children will double over the next ten years. The highest percent of obesity worldwide is amongst children. In Europe, officials are caling for food industries to set their own regulations, or face bans like the tobacco industry. McDonalds is trying to expand and reach new markets, but it is being threatened with social pressure from nutrionists and national governments. McDonald has been adjusting to this issue by adding new healthier options to its menus, adding balanced lifesyle messages into marketing campaigns, and by continuing to promote and raise funds for foundations aimed at helping children with life threatening illnesses. 1. How should McDonald’s respond when ads promoting healthy lifestyles featuring Ronald McDonald are equated with How Camel and cigatette ads? Should McDonald’s eliminate Ronald McDonald in its ads? In my opinion, eliminating the character Ronald McDonald is not the solution. The solution is for McDonalds to make an association between the character Ronald and positive images. For example, using Ronald for advertisements of healthy food and nutrition could build positive images of the mascot. It is important to mention that they primally sell products which contain high cholesterol and calories and bad...

Words: 1015 - Pages: 5

Premium Essay


...McDonald’s and Obesity Memo Chutian Chen MBA 603 03/22/2016 Q1: What McDonald’s need to respond is to change the traditional image. When Ronald McDonald represents the unhealthy lifestyle, people will avoid eating them. I think there is no need to eliminate Ronald McDonald in its ads, because Ronald McDonald is a symbol of McDonald’s. What they need to do is to take steps to change people’s thought of McDonald. If in ads, Ronald McDonald sell healthy salad or fruit to children, people will change their mind when think about McDonald’s. Q2: So, for fast-food companies, they only have one choice between pay 1.5% tax on their ad budgets and add health messages to their commercials. That’s a great way to solve the dilemma between the growing in food market and the rising of obesity. The first advantage of the law is the food company have to pay something to help government solving the obesity problem. Second, the law can force food company focus more on the obesity problem, and give them a chance to change their stereotyped image in public. For McDonald, I highly recommend them adding health messages to their commercials. As we all know that, for the most of giant food companies, ad budget is a large portion in their annual budget. 1.5% tax on their ad budgets can be an unaffordable burden for them. If McDonald choose adding health messages to their commercials, they will gain many benefits. First, McDonald has a very specific segmentation, so the ad with health messages...

Words: 366 - Pages: 2

Free Essay


...PHILIPPINES McDonald’s and Obesity Case Study December 07, 2015 Submitted by: Angelique Canubas Jackielene Mae Palmes Giann Carlos Delumpa Submitted to: Ma’am Donna Abrina Background of the Study Obesity is one of the most facing issues in the world. One of the reasons why obesity rises is because food companies sell sweeter and fatty products. Another is advertising, most food company advertises food that is very attractive to children’s like something tasty and yummy. Also, there is an increase of food sizes like in McDonald’s the average size of their French fries was tripled. To address this kind of problem, some countries ban advertises unhealthy foods implementing rather new strategies like promoting an active lifestyle. McDonald’s as one of the biggest food and successful company in the world broke a U.K campaign called “Changes” by not following their rules to cope up with this problem they launched an ad campaign about eating right and stay active. Food companies are testing ways to address the obesity issue. Finding a better solution of the problem will help the world reduced the number of the growing issues. Statement of the Problem How will McDonalds as one of the biggest fast food company in the world maintained their image despite of the increased number of obesity issues in a particular country? Objectives: delumpa’s part dagdagan mo pa ito. The objective of this case is to find out what strategies or move should McDonalds’ do in order for them...

Words: 618 - Pages: 3

Free Essay

Mcdonalds and Consumer Protection

...exist. That being said, I believe McDonalds does uphold the basic rights of consumers. Currently, McDonalds displays nutrition facts on all of there food items. That was not always the case. Prior to the movie super size me, and the ensuing lawsuits, McDonalds would offer consumers the option to upgrade their already unhealthy meals to a even larger potion known as super size. This ignored consumer rights because the establishment did not warn customers that they would be consuming nearly half of there daily calories just by having fries. Appropriately, McDonalds no longer tries to gear people towards the unhealthy option of super size and displays nutrition information on all of its products. Therefore it is fitting to state that the major rights of consumers have not always been upheld at McDonalds, but they are taking steps in the right directions. At present, they are making phenomenal strides toward a healthier menu. McDonald's started giving customers the option of choosing apple slices and milk as part of the Happy Meal package. They also began packaging 100-calorie versions of Oreos, Wheat Thins and other healthy treats. Also McDonalds is currently working on removing trans fats from their food. More and more McDonalds is taking gradual steps to making the American consumer more responsible for what they put in their own mouths. Soon, it is very likely that people will no longer be able to blame corporations like McDonalds for obesity because there will be healthy options...

Words: 1107 - Pages: 5

Premium Essay


...blame fast food for their obesity? Is it fair for fast food corporations to be held legally responsible for health problems that people are having? Many people today are obese and don’t take full responsibility for it, they blame corporations like McDonalds because of their unhealthy and fattening foods. Forty six percent of Americans ranked obesity as the number one health issue faced by Americans. Yet whom that should be to blame for these issues is still up in the air. If you’re walking/driving down a street and you pass a McDonalds, do you see employees forcing people into their restaurant? I sure don’t. In today’s society people are upset with their weight gain but still decide to go to eat at fast food restaurants and blame it on many other things but themselves. It’s not only that they eat fast food it’s how they choice what they eat on the menu. “McDonald’s food can fit into a healthy, well-balanced diet based upon the choice and variety available on our menu.” –Lisa Howard, McDonald’s spokeswoman. People take their own decisions into consideration when they step up to order their food. They could order something that could fit in their daily healthy diet like Lisa said, but eating this so much to the point where it’s a risk to your health and weight then that’s your own responsibility. “The analysts stress the importance of personal responsibility in preventing obesity, maintaining that there is no justification for criticizing McDonalds because ultimately a person...

Words: 971 - Pages: 4

Premium Essay

Corporate Responsibility: Marketing

...held liable for negative effects of their products on the very customer who chooses to buy it? In Pelman vs. McDonalds is a cause that was brought on behalf of a group of young people who claim that McDonald’s food is responsible for their obesity and ill health. The courts dismissed the case, but it brings up many correlations with the lawsuits against the tobacco industry and the questions of responsibility of marketers. Introduction In August of 2002 a lawsuit against the McDonalds Corporation was brought forward on behalf of a group of overweight children. The lawsuit alleged that McDonald’s food was responsible for their obesity and ill health. The plaintiffs allege that McDonalds falsely claimed to have healthier options, all the while pushing the upsizing of their more well-known items. (Mello, Rimm, & Studdert, 2015). Should a company be responsible to advise the consumers of the possible negative effects of their products? Should companies who fail to provide the facts to their customers be held legally responsible for the outcome? McDonalds In Pelman vs. McDonalds the complainants had some uphill battles with proving their obesity and ill-health were directly related to McDonald’s food. In the complaint it was alleged that McDonalds was negligent by failing to warn customers of the side effects of their products. The complaint also states that McDonalds fraudulently represented they offered healthier food options and marketed it as such. One of the greatest battles...

Words: 1171 - Pages: 5

Free Essay


... Lu Zuofu with his  experiment at Beibei.  This “model society” was implementing the same values in the early 20th century  that McDonald’s later touted in the U.S. fifty years later.  The author suspected that they had a common  ancestor in Taylorism, a business model developed in the U.S. around 1900.  Further research found that  indeed, they shared that common ideology.  Could this be the reason that the Chinese have adapted so  well to an open market system?  The ideas were not new, having, in fact been explored by Chinese  business leaders prior to the Cultural Revolution.  This curriculum project explores the history of Scientific Management in China and the U.S.  It also looks  at the concept of McDonaldizaiton and how McDonalds has had to adapt to succeed in China.  It...

Words: 4437 - Pages: 18

Premium Essay

Ethics in Olympic Sponsorships

...There are certain Olympic sponsors that are looked as not being appropriate for the games. The two that are brought up most often are McDonalds and Coca-Cola. Heineken is also looked at in a negative way, but for a little different reason. It is no surprise that to be an Olympic athlete one must be in top physical shape. That is pretty much the basis around the Olympics. Having each country display the dedication they put into the physical fitness of their athletes. A company such as McDonalds does not offer the healthiest choices which are why it does not get the approval by many people to be a leading sponsor for the games. The majority of their foods are filled with fat or they are extremely greasy. For a company such as Coca-Cola, they offer products that are very high in sugar. When many think of the Olympics they relate the games to drinks that are hydrating and replenishing to the body. The main carbonating products developed by Coca-cola are not a fit with the results that athletes need from their drinking products. The main question that arises is, should Olympic athletes cut ties with these sponsors? Also should Olympic athletes take sponsorship money from these companies? There are some athletes that are taking sponsorship money from McDonalds. Patrick Chan who is a figure skater is one. He stated that his favorite item is the double quarter pounder. This sandwich has over 650 calories and 37 grams of fat. There is no possible way that when Chan is training for...

Words: 1588 - Pages: 7

Premium Essay

Position Pater

...Who’s to blame for obesity in America? Is the fast food company who provides the food or us who eat that food? According to Don’t Blame the Eater by David Zinczenko, he says that the fast food companies are to blame. However, I beg to differ; we are responsible for the obesity in America. The fast food companies doesn’t come to your door and ask you to eat their food, instead it’s the other way around. The reason why there is obesity in America is because of the choices that people make and the money that they have. Also the lack of understanding of nutritional values goes hand to hand with the choice that people make. Lots of people eat at unhealthy fast food restaurants like McDonalds and Taco Bell is because they have cheap food. But that don’t mean that fast food is always the best choice. There are fast food restaurant which are little more expensive, but lot healthier, like Chipotle and Subway. The problem with fast food restaurants like Chipotle is that there aren’t that many around like McDonalds. In his essay David Zinczenko wrote that “restaurants like McDonalds don’t have nutritional fast on its food because it isn’t covered under Food and Drug Administration laws, so most people don’t know what they are eating and what kind of nutrients are in it”. But I believe that it is the consumers’ job to find out what they are putting in the body. Also restaurants like McDonalds and Taco Bell have become symbol of American fast food. If you ask anybody to name one fast food...

Words: 369 - Pages: 2

Premium Essay

Mcd Swot

...of McDonalds Malaysia briefly. Apart from this, we would also present the SWOT analysis which is Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunity, and Threats of the McDonalds. Strengths and weaknesses is internal environment, while opportunity and threats is external environment. Lastly, we suggested some recommendations to improve the situation of the McDonalds. 1.0. COMPANY’S BACKGROUND According to McDonalds (2014), McDonald’s is the global leading fast food retailer with more than 35,000 restaurants serving approximately 70 million people each day in more than 100 countries. There are more than 80% of restaurants worldwide are franchised by independent local franchisees. McDonald’s arrived in Malaysia in December 1980 and McDonald Corp. gave their license to Golden Arches Restaurants Sdn Bhd (GARSB) to open McDonald's Restaurant in Malaysia by Tan Sri Vincent Tan. Since then, McDonald’s Malaysia has about 196 franchise outlets nationwide and is currently expanding annually. It has created over 7000 job opportunity since they arrive in Malaysia over the years. (ifranchisemalaysia, 2014) 2.0. SWOT ANALYSIS 2.1 STRENGTHS According to Strategic Management Insight (2014), McDonalds has strong brand name, reputation and considered the first one who entered to fast food industry compare to other companies in Malaysia. According to McDonalds (2014), McDonald’s success is base on a foundation of integrity. There are hundreds of millions of people around the world trust McDonalds. McDonalds...

Words: 1635 - Pages: 7

Premium Essay


...of problems associated with fast food restaurants and an increase in national food consumption have resulted in negative health effects such as obesity, poor health and disease. We as Americans are always on the go; we need things fast and at our disposal. The home cooked meal is a luxury to some because many don’t have time to be home preparing meals. So fast food may be first on the list. Unaware of how the burger we just consumed, the chicken sandwich or even something as simple as a salad was produced, cleaned and transported to the fast food chain restaurants, most never worry about the health and safety risks this can cause to the body and the human population. My argument is that we should be more careful and conscientious to what we eat. Obesity has become a national issue a lot of health issues have been associated with obesity. Since 1970 the amount of fast food restaurants in businesses doubled which equates to almost 300,000 establishments in the United States. It is a coincidence that 33.8 percent of the U.S population is affected by obesity and 19 percent of children and adolescents are also affected. Meaning the more fast food restaruants we create the more likely we will frequent these establishments on a day to day to basis. Many fast food items are high in calories and grams of fat. If you purchase a McDonalds Big Mac which is 540 calories and 29 grams of fat, a Medium Fry 380 calories and 19 grams of fat and a large sweet tea 280 calories, that’s 1200...

Words: 739 - Pages: 3

Premium Essay

Marketing to Children

...colorful characters, like Ronald McDonald, make the unhealthy products that this industry is selling look attractive to children; the message is not what it purports to be. Due to the naive minds of children, advertising towards children has become a big problem for our nation. There is no doubt that the fast food industry has played a big part in our nation’s growing obesity epidemic, which will continue to grow if these companies are allowed to continue their successful strategies. These companies have been impugned. Through the inventions of the Internet and cell phones, there will only be more ways for fast food companies to reach out to children. The government should push to censor more minutes of fast food advertisements on kids’ television networks, regulate the number of advertisements that appear online on kids’ websites, and stop companies from targeting low class minorities who may not have a parent available to teach them healthy eating habits. Also, parents who are able to should take responsibility and show their children healthy eating habits, and limit time spent watching television. Obesity is a danger to children, due to the fact that it will be referenced many times when the topic of fast food advertising towards children is discussed. The amount of fast food children are eating has proliferated over the past years. According to “The Impact of Food Advertising on Childhood Obesity,” the rates of childhood obesity in...

Words: 1522 - Pages: 7

Premium Essay


...Running Head: MCDONALD’S AND OBESITY Case Study #1: McDonald’s and Obesity Monica Cassetta Central Michigan University-- MKT 560 February 1, 2014 Introduction Obesity is an ongoing problem not only in America, but seen all over the world. There are many assumptions in regards to why this has been on the rise in recent years, and who is to blame for this. Obesity and over-weight adults, as well as children, has become increasingly common, as well as seen. With over 1 billion overweight adults with 400 million of them being obese, and with 155 million children being over-weight worldwide (Cateora, Gilly, Graham, 2013), this issue needed to be addressed. With that said, the big question is, how do we stop this rise as a whole. An ongoing issue and example to today’s obesity is fast food chains i.e. McDonald’s, and how they advertise. And though McDonald’s is one of the leading companies in the fast-food chain industry across the globe, people have been outraged with their marketing and campaigns to eat their unhealthy menu items. Thankfully, even with the bad publicity McDonald’s had and has received on numerous occasions, they are still able to have a constant growth within their company. Question #1: When it comes to fast-food industries, marketing and advertising is the key to their success. They typically use the 4P’s of marketing which are, product, price, place, and promotion. “Having accurate research is essential in creating the right marketing” (Business...

Words: 2339 - Pages: 10