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McDonald's Takes More Steps to Turn Around Sales

OAK BROOK, Ill. — McDonald's Corp. is planning multiple initiatives to bring back customers who are eating elsewhere. Localized menu offerings, expanded breakfast hours and upgrades to existing products are among its upcoming offerings, according to various media reports.

Instead of making changes to its national menu that will affect restaurants across the country, McDonald's is working to add locally customized items, such as white cheddar Egg McMuffins in Chicago and pulled pork sandwiches in Indiana, currently available at 90 restaurants until the end of July.

The company has had success with regional offerings in the past, including the McRib sandwich, which was available at approximately 75 percent of McDonald's U.S. restaurants last year, and the Filet-O-Fish, which was created by an Ohio franchisee in 1965.

The fast-food giant is going upscale with the return of one of these regional offerings. A lobster roll made entirely from North Atlantic lobster is available at New England McDonald's restaurants for a limited time, priced at $7.99 for one roll or $10.99 for a value meal. This marks the first time lobster rolls have been offered by McDonald's in the United States since 2005.

"The return of the Lobster Roll is exciting because we have requests for it every summer," stated spokesperson Nicole Garvey. "It's a delicious sandwich and we are thrilled to offer this regional favorite at a great value."

McDonald's also announced it will continue to expand the number of restaurants that serve a limited breakfast menu all day instead of cutting it off at 10:30 a.m. Twelve locations in Greenville and Greenwood, Miss., launched the all-day breakfast menu on June 22. The limited menu includes biscuit sandwiches, hotcakes, sausage burritos, hash browns, Fruit 'N Yogurt Parfait and Fruit & Maple Oatmeal.

Finally, McDonald's plans to put a new spin on an old favorite by introducing a larger quarter-pounder burger patty that weighs 4.25 ounces before cooking. The larger size and new shape makes it more like a quarter-pounder-plus, according to the company. The existing McDonald's quarter-pounder patty weighs 4 ounces before cooking and shrinks to 2.8 ounces afterward.

The new patty is scheduled to roll out within the next month and is said to improve the taste, texture and appearance of McDonald's burgers as it retains more moisture, creating a juicier and more flavorful burger.

"As [CEO] Steve Easterbrook has shared, we're always innovating around McDonald's food, drinks and restaurant experience based on customers' preferences, and that includes hotter food and reviewing cooking procedures, and we'll share more details soon," the company said in a released statement.

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