(UPDATED COVERAGE, Jan. 11) McDonald’s features growers and ranchers in a series of television commercials launched Jan. 2.

The restaurant chain’s suppliers appearing in the ads include Dirk Giannini, partner in Christensen & Giannini LLC, Salinas, Calif.; Frank Martinez, principal of Saddle View Farms, Warden, Wash.; and Steve Foglesong, owner of Black Gold Cattle Co., Astoria, Ill.

They provide lettuce, potatoes and beef, respectively.

The full videos, lasting about two minutes each, appear on McDonald’s website. The company aims to connect consumers with the places and people that supply lettuce, potatoes and beef.

“Supplier Stories” is the theme for the campaign, which includes digital and print ads, said Ashlee Yingling, spokeswoman for McDonald’s USA.

UPDATED: McDonald’s TV ads feature growers“The intent is to share the story of where the journey begins with our food and build on a broader effort over the past few years that has addressed other steps of how our ingredients go from the farm to the front counter,” Yingling said. “McDonald’s recognizes that people today are increasingly more interested in understanding what is in their food and where it comes from.”

McDonald’s, however, isn’t releasing other suppliers’ names, including sliced apples and salad ingredient growers and marketers.

“That list changes. It’s not something we share,” Yingling said.

Giannini, a fourth-generation family farmer, describes growers’ care for the land and the quality and freshness of lettuce.

Giannini is also president of the Monterey County Farm Bureau. Two or three different versions of his ad will air nationally in rotation with beef and potatoes, according to a Farm Bureau news release.

His ad was shot in late October in the Salinas Valley. Under direction from McDonald’s, Giannini declined to talk to The Packer.

The videos also appear on YouTube: lettuce, potatoes and beef.

The ads will appear in January and sporadically throughout the year, Yingling said. Growers and ranchers were chosen based on suppliers’ recommendations.

“It’s possible suppliers of other ingredients could be featured, but it’s too early to say,” she said.

Post it please

McDonald’s TV ads feature growers
By Mike Hornick
Staff Writer
McDonald’s features growers and ranchers in a series of television commercials launched Jan. 2.
The restaurant chain’s suppliers appearing in the ads include Dirk Giannini, partner in Christensen & Giannini LLC, Salinas, Calif.; Frank Martinez, principal, Saddle View Farms, Warden, Wash.; and Steve Foglesong, owner, Black Gold Cattle Co., Astoria, Ill.
The full videos, lasting about two minutes each, appear on McDonald’s website at http://www.mcdonalds.com/us/en/supplierstories.html#/. The company aims to connect consumers with the places and people that supply lettuce, potatoes and beef.
Martinez, for example, recounts growing up as a son of farmworkers and eventually acquiring his own farm. He now grows about 1,000 acres of potatoes. Giannini, a fourth-generation family farmer, describes growers’ care for the land and the quality and freshness of lettuce.
McDonald’s chief marketing officer Neil Golden had previewed the campaign in December.
“One thing we’re doing is telling our farm-to-fork story about our food,” he said on Twitter.
Giannini is also president of the Monterey County Farm Bureau. Two or three different versions of his ad will air nationally in rotation with beef and potatoes, according to a Farm Bureau news release.
His ad was shot over two days in late October in the Salinas Valley.
The videos also appear on YouTube at http://youtu.be/Hv2lNjF1Pl4 (lettuce); http://youtu.be/3xxlEkstcwM (potatoes); and http://youtu.be/8sjPnAYwdNI (beef).
Other companies that waged similar ad campaigns include Frito-Lay, which had a series of print and television ads featuring their potato growers.