Through literature review we were also able to identify that in an attempt to increase the nutrition and the health value of its meals, McDonalds has invested heavily in revamping its menu. “McDonald’s provides nutritional information on its menu, packaging, on the back of tray liners, on its Web site and on the customer information line. More than anything, there’s a need to educate and inform people about nutrition and the importance of balance between diet and physical activity. In fact, a McDonald’s Happy Meal with four-piece Chicken McNuggets, low-fat milk and Apple Dippers provides less than one-third of the government’s recommendation for fat and calories for children.” (Pellegrini, 2007)
Through the literature review as well as through the primary research conducted on the topic of children as consumers in the fast food market, we were successful in determining their role in the industry. They play a very dominant and powerful role in the industry as they are responsible for more than 50 percent of the consumer expenditure in this industry. Moreover their choices of the meals, the trends in the market etc are very relevant and of importance to the companies in the fast food industry. They are also powerful influencers of their parents and households purchase decision making process. However they are also easily influenced by the television, especially the characters and the celebrities on TV and animated films. They are also very impressionable and make supreme effort to fit in groups. This makes them susceptible to peer pressure as well.
The parents of the children however prefer home cooked meals but due to time and resource availability constraints are unable to invest in them. They are willing to accept the fast food offered meals for children if they are more varying and have more healthy items offered in the menu as well.
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