HAPPY MACLANCH: How was McDonald’s baby combo born?

A cardboard box decorated with a smaller version of the menu, with a variety of toys for children or adult collectors. This is the basic description MC happy snacksWhich has been valid for decades on this alternative network Fast food McDonald’s.

The origins of the snack format, however, are already quite old, as well as controversial – there is a record of an informal project in the same mold that originated in Central America, and not in the United States, not to mention that the concept didn’t even start in cafeterias and was inspired by a rival.

A good idea (from other people)

McLanche Feliz’s first inspiration that we know today came from another country and dates back to the mid-1970s. Yolanda Fernandez de CofinoResponsible for the newly opened McDonald’s in Guatemala, has created an unprecedented and exclusive marketing campaign Ronald’s menu.

This combo includes a hamburger, a side of fry, a glass of soda and a sundae ছোট all small enough to feed kids and a little cheaper than other foods. Also, there was a quirky toy, bought by Yolanda, with breakfast served in a traditional tray.

Yolanda is receiving an award from the company.

One year ago and unknown about Yolanda’s idea, another popular fast food chain in the United States at the time, called Burger ChefLaunched its own version of a breakfast for children: In 1973, The Funny foodA box of food for children with small portions, as well as toys associated with the restaurant’s own characters – such as the little chef Jeff and the magician Burgerini.

Funmel's Funberger.Funmel’s Funberger.

Fun Mill – a fun food, free translation into Portuguese – was a success and put the company in second place in stores opened across the country, second only to McDonald’s.

Happy McLench was born

She needs to run in order not to lose her young audience, says St. Marketing Manager. Louis, Dick Brums, the company’s advertising executive, listed Bob Bernstein for similar ventures.

In 1979, the first edition of McLanche Feliz was released – a familiar name here in Brazil, and was originally called Good food. The first box already had Hamcock’s traditional bow in the shape of a handle.

At this point the debate begins and the sources become disconnected. There are indications that Yolanda presented the Ronald menu to brand executives at a marketing conference in 1977.

However, some of those responsible for the final project claim that they only found out about it later and that the contestant was the main inspiration.

Bob and the first box of good food.Bob and the first box of good food.

The burger chef sued McDonald’s for stealing the idea, but lost the case.

Toys and collections

Early toys were common or themed, such as circus-related hobbies. But by the end of the same year, brand licensing had become a major weapon: Inspired by the competitor’s successful partnership with Star Wars, McDonald’s was preparing for the arrival of another science fiction, Star Trek, his first feature film at the time. Movies

The Star Trek collection was a success and opened several commercial doors.The Star Trek collection was a success and opened several commercial doors.

Over time, McLench Feliz maintained its status as a children’s menu, but it did not stop receiving criticism – especially for the idea of ​​enticing children to eat their company’s food with a toy.

But the initiative was a success, and soon new deals were made with movies, cartoons, games and other franchises, which are still going on today. Disney was a long-time partner and, in 1996, the Tiny Benny Babies collection was considered the first great national fever among consumers.

The burger chef was shrinking until it was definitely closed in 1996, selling the structure to other chains. Fast food.

Yolanda, on the other hand, has been sanctified inside and outside Guatemala for running a McDonald’s in the country – even receiving the “Ronald de Prata” award for his pioneering role in the development of children’s food. He died in 2021 at the age of 87.

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