May 20th, 2014

A New Mascot in Old Fight Over Fast Food and Kids

By TOM GARA and JULIE JARGON
Corporate Intelligence (Wall Street Journal)

There’s a new character in the age-old war over marketing fast food to children. Ronald McDonald has been the face of McDonald’sMCD -0.12% — and criticism of its child-friendly advertising strategy — for decades. But those critics need to get used to a new combatant in the fight over fast food marketing to children.

Introducing Happy, the new mascot of the McDonald’s kid-focused Happy Meal: Happy is getting a cold welcome from health campaigners, who have targeted McDonald’s for the way it advertises its food to children – giving away collectible toys with meals, partnering up with kids movies and cartoon characters, and employing a clown and other child-friendly mascots.

Read more: http://blogs.wsj.com/corporate-intelligence/2014/05/20/happy-a-new-mascot-in-an-old-fight-over-fast-food-and-kids/

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