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McDonald’s will not be left out of the Mix of ‘better for you’ Restaurant Brands.

This week we brought you the story of Just Salads focus on the ‘halo’ of better for you and its new carbon footprint menu.  With only 42 stores many of you wrote and said that it is easy for a small chain to evolve with a ‘better for you’ positioning.
However, according to Steven Johnson, Grocerant Guru® at Tacoma, WA based Foodservice Solutions®restaurant chains of all sizes need to reevaluate the importance of a sustainable path moving forward as it has become of growing importance for consumers.
So, McDonald’snewest restaurant is fully self-powered. Yes, that’s right, McDonald’s newly remodeled Florida unit opened this week, featuring solar panels and covers all of its energy needs. Now that is extending the value of the brand with incremental customer relevance according to Johnson.
In fact, a remodeled building on the west side of Disney property in Lake Buena Vista, Fla., is designed to cover all of its energy needs on a “net annual basis.” This first of its kind unit is intended to become a “learning hub” for McDonald’s in a effort to reduce energy and water use cost for itself and its franchisees.
Marion Gross, McDonald’s chief supply chain officer in North America  stated “These unprecedented times have only heightened the importance of innovation that fosters long-term security and sustainability,”.  Gross continued calling the location “an important step in McDonald’s journey to reduce our carbon footprint and identify meaningful solutions in the fight against climate change.”
So, the restaurant is 8,024 square feet and was designed by Ross Barney Architects out of Chicago along with the Florida architectural and engineering firm CPH. The store has a solar-paneled roof, photovoltaic glass panels throughout the building, and solar parking lot lights outside.
Get this it also features an automated energy system and a passive ventilation dining room that circulates air and regulates temperature, which the company says, “allows the building to breathe.”
The location also features interactive elements for customers to learn about the restaurant’s design, including stationary bikes that generate electricity and illuminate the Golden Arches and games that teach children about renewable energy. NO that’s branding with a relevant message.
Just Salads is no alone as last year, McDonald’s invested in a pair of virtual power purchase agreements to expand the amount of renewable energy available in the U.S. Once online, the energy generated by those projects will be equal to the power generated by 2,500 of its restaurants.  How are you evolving?
Foodservice Solutions® specializes in outsourced business development. We can help you identify, quantify and qualify additional food retail segment opportunities or a new menu product segment and brand and menu integration strategy.  Foodservice Solutions® of Tacoma WA is the global leader in the Grocerant niche visit us on our social media sites by clicking one of the following links: Facebook,  LinkedIn, or Twitter


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