Just last week, it was reported that McDonald’s (NYSE:MCD) was dropping its beloved Angus burgers from the menu. Greg Watson, SVP of McDonald’s USA’s Menu Innovation Team, has now told BurgerBusiness that three new Quarter Pounders are being introduced to the McDonald’s menu to make up for the loss.
Watson’s plan, which involves “converting two of the 5.33-oz patty Angus builds to 4-oz patty Quarter Pounders while also creating a new third QP (the Habanero Ranch),” will surely satiate meat lovers nationwide.
Similar to the company’s three Angus burger varieties, customers will be able to choose from three Quarter Pounder options, Watson explains. Keeping in mind what was popular with the Angus varieties, the Deluxe, Bacon & Cheese, and the Habanero Ranch will comprise the Quarter Pounder trio. Habanero Ranch, McDonald’s newest flavor — composed of white Cheddar, bacon, lettuce, tomato, and habanero ranch sauce — will be permanently added to the menu after customers showed a significant interest in it as a dipping sauce.
And a new burger isn’t the only kind of meat McDonald’s is planning to introduce. Watson was quick to point out that customers should also expect to see a new, thick-cut, applewood-smoked bacon appear as an option soon. According to Watson, the new Quarter Pounders are what “makes for a great eating experience.”
Interestingly, neither BurgerBusiness nor Watson put much emphasis on the price of these new ticket items, something that might come as a surprise after one of the main reasons cited for the Angus burger’s removal was its high price that couldn’t compete with the dollar menu’s less expensive items.
When BurgerBusiness asked Watson whether the Angus Burger’s replacement had anything to do with the need to have more mid-price menu items, he replied: “Price really wasn’t a factor in the decision. We believe that we have a hit on our hands by taking this great Quarter Pounder icon and bringing news to it. And let me emphasize that we are not touching the original Quarter Pounder and Quarter Pounder with Cheese. They will stay just as they are.”
Seeing how Watson is obviously more worried about the reputation of the Quarter Pounder than its price, it is possible the real decline of the Angus burger didn’t lie behind its high price in today’s struggling economy, but rather, its inability to meet its customers’ taste buds’ needs.
The Quarter Pounders are expected to appear on McDonald’s menu in late May or early June.