McDonald’s is one of the world’s major fast-food chains to be sure. Its branding is materialized in their signature menu, which has the distinction of being expanded by several of its franchise holders to a respectable range of selections. In the spirit of this dynamic evolution, McDonald’s isn’t one to shy away from changing a few things from what they already have, especially if it makes things better than before. Last year’s decision to remove preservatives from Chicken McNuggets was one such move, and now they’re at it again by presenting alternatives to the current face of the menu – the #Big Mac – that’ll cater to customers who think it’s either too huge and steep, or too little and willing to spend more.

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To meet these needs, McDonald’s is shrinking and enlarging the Big Mac.

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The new Mac family

After some low-key testing at McDonald’s branches in the “beef-centric” areas at Ohio and Dallas/Fort Worth back in 2016, the chain is now ready to globally introduce the new variants of the good old Big Mac, that iconic double-decker #burger with two 1/10 pound beef patties with secret “Big Mac” sauce, cheese, pickles, onions and lettuce in a sesame-seed bun that’s been an institution for years. Now patrons can choose between a Mac Jr. that has only one layer of (a wider 1/6 pound) patty with all the usual Big Mac embellishments, or go up to eleven with the appropriately named Grand Mac, a monster version of vanilla Big Mac with two 1/3 pound patties in a bun with larger sesame seeds even.

For those who’re wondering how these new Mac burgers came about, it’s the fruit of a few past years’ worth of surveys that asked patrons what new menu items they’d like added, according to a McDonald’s chef, Mike Haracz.

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When the Mac Jr. and the Grand Mac become available this early 2017, it’ll be customer sales that’ll ultimately decide whether they become a limited-time only thing or a permanent fixture. It’ll be an uphill battle though; America’s in the middle of addressing its obesity problem and the thought of a deliciously huge burger can mess with the resolve to slim down, seeing as a Grand Mac is packing 860 calories. For reference, the “regular” Big Mac has 540 while the Mac Jr. has 460 calories.

Honoring the inventor

The Big Mac was not part of the McDonald’s menu from the start. It was conceived in 1967 by visionary franchise holder Jim Delligatti from Uniontown in Pennsylvania. It’s rather sad yet fitting that Delligatti, who owned 48 McDonald’s franchises in his life, died November 2016 at age 98 mere weeks after the fast-food chain broached the development of the Mac Jr. and Grand Mac for the future. #McDonald's