If you regularly follow this blog, you know I’m disgusted with the unrelenting advertising and marketing assaults the fast-food behemoths unleash on America’s children.

From “limited-edition” toys promoted with Happy Meals to nonstop TV ads, it’s an interminable brainwashing campaign that comes at a time when U.S. children are experiencing record obesity levels and diabetes risks.

In the world of promotional dirty tricks, McDonald’s recently put its foot in its two-all-beef-patties-filled mouth, this time in Japan.

As reported in Japan Today, 1,000 consumers were paid to stand in line—many overnight—for the Quarter Pounder’s (above) debut at a Kansai-area McDonald’s.

Media watchers suspect the staged McEvent was designed to hype the bulky burger, thereby increasing demand and boosting sales. In defensive mode, the McPR machine insists the 1,000 payees were there to provide consumer feedback.

As we try to teach our kids to eat more fruits and vegetables (preferably organic) and less junk food, this kind of marketing blitz is a shameful betrayal of consumer trust.

Hey, fast-food companies, here’s a super-sized idea: Sell your food legitimately, without stupid gimmicks, and let the marketplace decide where it wants to spend its dining dollars. And while you’re at it, stop bribing preschool kids and impulsive tweens with crappy toys.

From Our Organic Blog Archives

Photo courtesy of McDonald’s