Fast food global shift: McDonald’s replaces US Chief but Subway takes the overpass

Posted by AFN Staff Writers on 21st November 2012

McDonald’s has replaced its US Chief in a move that reflects bigger shifts in the global fast food business.

Last week McDonald’s announced that Jan Fields, who has spent 35 of her 57 years at McDonald’s, will be replaced by Jeff Stratton from December 1, 2012. McDonald’s acknowledged its “difficult environment,” but wanted to make decisions to “improve for the “long term.”

Meanwhile rival takeaway food venue Subway is now considered to be Australia’s largest fast food chain. More than 38,140 Subway restaurants exist worldwide in 99 countries. In Australia, there are currently 1254 Subway restaurants, compared with McDonald’s 780 stores in Australia.

The Subway chain has continued to collect accolades in 2012 including YouGov’s BrandIndex Buzz Ranking’s “Most Loved Fast Food Chain in the U.S,”  Zagat’s annual Fast Food Survey’s number one spot for  “Top Service,” “Healthy Options,” and “Most Popular” categories, Harris Poll Equi Trends Poll’s Brand of the Year & #1 Quick Service Restaurant and Added Value’s Cultural Traction Survey’s #1 Culturally Relevant Restaurant Brand.

While Subway Australia does not make its financial results available to the public, a Subway spokesperson told Australian Food News that that Subway had responded well to its customers who were “looking for healthier options.”

“Our point of difference is that we offer the opportunity for you to have a sandwich or salad exactly the way you want it. We offer plenty of vegetable and salads, and our subs are freshly made right before your eyes,” Mr Miles said.

The latest McDonald’s figures  released on November 8 2012, show a continued economic difficulty with a 1.8 per cent dip in global revenue at “same-store” restaurants open for at least 13 months, ruling out the performance of newly opened and closed stores. The Asia Pacific region experienced a 2.4 per cent decrease, while US and European stores fell 2.2 per cent respectively.

McDonald’s attributed the continued sales decline to “challenges in the global marketplace,” but remained confident that McDonald’s could return as the leading fast food chain.

Despite this, figures reported in The Australian newspaper in March 2011 showed that Subway’s share of the Australian takeaway food market was 2 per cent, compared with McDonald’s who had 19.5 per cent at the time of the article.


Subway is increasing in popularity, as global fast food trends appear to be changing.