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McDonald’s Globalization
Globalization is a process of interaction and integration among the people, companies, and governments of different nations, a process driven by international trade and investment and aided by information technology. Globalization has affected almost every aspect of life in almost every nation. From economic to social to culture, this widespread exchange of goods,services and ideas have influenced changes around the world. (Globalization 101) Globalization has a tremendous influence over culture and its power has consequences to the nations involved and its people. Food is an important element in defining culture. (Witteloostuijn) “Food is the oldest global carrier of culture.” (Witteloostuijn 1) Any changes in the foods that we eat, in its preparation, theway it is served and consumed diminishes the traditional beliefs of the people.
One of the biggest changes came with the introduction of fast food restaurants like McDonald’s into foreign countries. A lot of different things have taken place when it comes to a place like McDonald’s in foreign countries which could be perceived as beneficial or corrupting to that culture. McDonald’s is a hugenationwide corporation that has changed what people had previously thought fast food was. The people at McDonald’s wanted to share the love of American food with different cultures and companies so McDonald’s went on to be the first company to try to export their goods. (Wikipedia) In an article titled Globalization as McWorld it was stated that McDonald’s is a multinational corporation that operates30,000 restaurants in 119 countries that serve 47 million customers each day. Aside from all of the praise and fortune that McDonald’s has been able to accomplish one must wonder how this is actually affecting the different cultures that McDonald’s has laid foundation on.
The globalization of such a successful franchise has uplifting many arguments and debates basically about whether it is a goodor bad thing. The pro side would say that the globalization of McDonald’s enhances diversity and culture and the other side would argue that it diminishes the original respect for what the culture has sent down from generations before them. An article titles Cultural differences states that “In most communities, in fact, the McDonald’s has conformed to the local culture not the other way around.The McDonald’s corporation notes that most of its overseas franchises are locally owned, and thus make efforts to buy from local communities. McDonald’s also alters its regional menus to conform to local taste.
For instance one can look at the changes made in Japan When the first franchise opened in there, the menu consisted mostly of items similar to those in the United States. In effort toincrease sales, McDonald’s restaurants experimented with different food items such as Chinese fried rice, curried rice with chicken, and fried egg burgers. The menu adjustments are examples of McDonald’s playing to one of its guiding principles: a commitment to exceeding customer expectations. (Cultural Differences)
With the introduction of non-traditional food into the culture of foreign countries,there has been a loss of traditional values. In some countries the types of foods that they eat are very symbolic to their culture. In India, to the Hindu people, the cow is considered to be sacred as part of its religion according to (2007). With the introduction of non traditional foods into this society, as with many others, there are harming effects on the traditions it tries touphold.
Since McDonald’s is viewed as American and the movement away from traditional foods, the term “Americanization” is used. “Americanization” describes the influence of the United States of America on the culture of other countries. It refers to the globalization of American businesses, culture, lifestyle and technology. (Wikipedia) This is exactly what Americans have done by bringing...
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