McDonalds Worldwide

By 2004, McDonalds had become a $40 billion global enterprise with more than 30,000 restaurants in 120 countries and more than half its sales outside the United States. International outlets are adapted to local cultures. In Saudi Arabia, for example, single men are seated separately from women and children. Indian McDonald's restaurants serve no beef or pork, but feature instead such menu items as a Chicken Maharaja Mac, a Paneer Salsa Wrap, and a McAloo Tikki Burger. In Japan, where the "r" sound is difficult, Ronald McDonald goes by the name Donald McDonald. As the chain faces slowing sales in a mature domestic market, the pace of its international expansion has increased. In China, where there are already 500 McDonald's, the chain plans to open more than 100 new branches a year. The company has become a major employer worldwide, with more than 1 million employees. However, despite (or because of) its international success, McDonald's has frequently come under attack as a symbol of American cultural imperialism. In 2000, anti-globalization protesters in a French farm town smashed windows in a half-built McDonald's franchise, highlighting the struggle between small farmers and big business in the global agriculture market. And after the United States began bombing Afghanistan in 2001, McDonald's outlets in Pakistan and Indonesia were vandalized. Attacks on McDonald's have been recorded in more than 50 countries.

—Paula Kepos is remembered as a pioneer in the fast-food industry, and was named as one of Time magazine's "Builders and Titans" of the twentieth century. see also Dietary Trends, American; Fast Foods.

Delores C. S. James

Bibliography

Kroc, Raymond, A. (1977). Grinding It Out. Chicago, IL: Contemporary Books.

Schlosser, Eric (2001). Fast Food Nation: The Dark Side of the All-American Meal. New York: Houghton Mifflin.

Internet Resources

Britannica.com (2001). "Kroc, Ray." Available from <http://www.britannica.com> Pepin, Jacques. (2000). "Ray Kroc." Available from <http://www.time.com/time>

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