Sunday, September 21, 2008

Head's up, McDonald's...

Here’s some cool news out of India.  The first commercial, fast food version of a favorite Indian food, vada pav, is becoming popular in Mumbai.  The vegetarian version of a cheeseburger is essentially just a deep fried potato patty.  This article from the AFP discuss the significance of the vada pav’s commercialization and its potential to rival the success of McDonald’s in India.

McDonald’s has done a great job marketing internationally, infiltrating even resistant markets like France and the Middle East.  But the key to their success has been marketing local foods in a fast food variety.  “Greek Mac” anybody?  Here are some more examples. 

And while McDonald’s in India serves up a vada pav-like sandwich, a new Indian company, Jumbo King, based in Mumbai, sells authentic versions for less, giving McDonald’s a run for its money.  It’ll be interesting to see if McDonald’s can keep its foothold in India with new local chains revving up the competition!  Is this a backlash against globalization (read Americanization) that might actually succeed?  I guess we’ll see.

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