We ate it up! With McRib, McDonald’s sales jump


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Sales at McDonald’s restaurants jumped 4.9% in November, fueled by sales of the company’s oddly iconic McRib sandwich, made with a pressed-pork patty that contains no ribs.

The sandwich comes and goes from McDonald’s menus, depending on the interest of local franchise holders and the giant chain’s corporate marketing team.


In November, the sandwich came back as a national offering for the first time in 16 years -- and consumers ate it up. McDonald’s chief executive, Jim Skinner, said the success of McRib, along with high-end McCafe coffees in the U.S. and fancy wrap sandwiches in Europe, would make the fast-food giant customers’ ‘favorite place to eat.’

McDonald’s sales have been rising for months, in part because the company’s food is relatively affordable in difficult economic times. But the chain’s popularity comes at a time when there is also increasing concern that fast food may be contributing to the nation’s obesity problem.

Activists already have had some success instituting so-called Happy Meal bans, which forbid fast-food restaurants in San Francisco and Santa Clara Counties from handing out toys with children’s meals that have too many calories or too much salt and fat. In Los Angeles, the City Council is considering banning new fast-food restaurants from some locations.


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-- Sharon Bernstein