Vegetable Deluxe

In 2004 (or thereabouts) McDonalds in England dropped the Vegetable Deluxe, which is a pity. If you ordered it without the egg-based sauce it was actually pure vegetarian. Not particularly nice to eat, but no animal products.

The Vegetable Deluxe was replaced by the Quorn something-or-other, and Quorn contains egg, so its demise was a step in the wrong direction. This was itself replaced, apparently, by a vegetable and cheese sandwich; available without the cheese on request.

So what are McDonalds up to? I decided to write to them and ask, and they replied saying that the Veg Deluxe was simply discontinued. Hmmm.

The next time I was at a McDonalds (some considerable time later) I asked the manager for his views, and was told I could have one. Great! Well, not great; but better than nothing. Can I have a receipt with that?

Armed with the receipt to prove that it was still on the menu I wrote back to head office and this time I received an apology – apparently it’s available, but at the manager’s discretion. The manager I spoke to had no intention of stopping, and supplies were readily available even if it didn’t appear on the menu.

But why should anyone care? Surely McDonalds is the Great Satan of the catering world. Well, actually, they’re not as bad as many and they do respond to public opinion. Any business that doesn’t is, by definition, selling the wrong thing.

So consider this: If people don’t order the Vegetable Deluxe from time to time then McDonalds really will stop selling it. Is this a good thing or a bad thing? I say it’s bad. It reinforces their (supposed) corporate idea that meat is the only thing that sells. Actually, if you go to McDonalds in India you’d be hard pressed to find meat, which is proof enough that they do respond to what the locals are demanding. If they’re not selling what you’re after, go and demand it. A boycott isn’t going to scare them.

The only downside is that if you buy a Veggie Deluxe to encourage them you’ll have to find something to do with it, unless you propose to eat it.

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