McDonald's surfs health/fitness waves

McDonald's Corp. is responding to sluggish sales and health-oriented changes in competitors' menus with a few changes of its own. According to Bloomberg News, McDonald's CEO James Skinner announced at a March 8 press conference that the chain will soon add fruit salad to the menu in its U.S. restaurants. "We are evolving our menu to meet our customers' needs," he remarked.

In addition, the chain is launching a fitness-focused ad campaign featuring hockey legend Wayne Gretzky, tennis stars Venus and Serena Williams and other athletes. The ads will promote exercise and healthful eating with the slogan, "It's what I eat and what I do. I'm lovin' it."

Bloomberg also reported that since Skinner took McDonald's helm in January, he has continued to focus on driving revenue with higher-ticket items that appeal to health-conscious consumers. Nevertheless, in February McDonald's posted its lowest sales gains in two years. Same-store sales in the U.S. rose only 4.6 percent, while sales in Europe fell 3.4 percent.

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