Big Mac turning 50

By: Katelin Gandee - Staff writer

LAURINBURG — Although the Big Mac is turning 50, it’s familiarity with customers at the Golden Arches has hardly decreased its popularity. In fact, the local McDonald’s location is selling between 400 and 500 of the iconic sandwich every day.

The Big Mac was created in 1967 and officially introduced to the menus in 1968. It was created by Michael James “Jim” Delligatti, who wanted to test the burger at his Pittsburgh restaurants.

The company agreed to let him sell the double-decker sandwich at a single location with the condition he use the company’s standard bun. The standard bun didn’t work so Delligatti tried the sandwich with a bigger sesame seed bun. The burger proceeded to lift sales by more than 12 percent.

Follow similar results at more stores, the Big Mac was added to the nation menu. Now 50 years later the burger remains unchanged with its two all-beef patties, special sauce, lettuce, cheese, pickles, onions, and a sesame seed bun.

Despite the “Golden Arches” suffering less customers in recent years, causing a reduction in the number of U.S. stores, thousands of the famous burgers are being sold weekly at the Laurinburg location.

According to Department Manager Jonquettee McKoy, the local chain sells between 2,800 and 3,500 Big Macs are sold per week. Even with the large number, the Big Mac’s aren’t the top seller currently — though they are on the top selling list.

“Currently the fresh quarter-pounder is our top seller right now,” McKoy said.

As for why the burger is so successful, McKoy has an idea.

“It’s the sauce, everyone loves the sauce,” McKoy said. “Even if they don’t get the Big Mac people will get it on other things … even salads.”

Now McKoy says they’re planning on selling even more of the “two all-beef patties, special sauce on a sesame seed bun” starting on Thursday when the MacCoin promotion starts. The MacCoin is a way the chain is commemorating the anniversary, which feature five different coins that can be redeemed for a Big Mac.

The MacCoins will begin at lunchtime on Thursday and all that’s needed to get one is to purchase a Big Mac. The coins will be available and can be redeemed at any McDonald’s across the U.S., and more than six million are planned to be distributed.

The coins not only will allow you to receive a free Big Mac it can also be considered a collector’s item since there will be five coins with different designs to celebrate each decade of the Big Mac.

The MacCoins will be distributed until supplies run out.

Katelin Gandee can be reached at 910-506-3171 or [email protected]

Katelin Gandee

Staff writer