International quick-service giant McDonaldâs is trying to cash in on the local movement.
The chainâs western Washington region launched the From Here campaign late July, meant to inform Washingtonians of the in-state origin of the apples, potatoes, fish and milk McDonaldâs sources.
The campaign includes TV ads and billboards throughout the western part of the state, as well as a new microsite with facts about the chainâs use of Washington ingredients.
Selah, Wash.-based Tree Top Inc. is the primary supplier of the chainâs apples nationwide, according to a campaign fact sheet, but the chain has four other suppliers, including Irwindale, Calif.-based Ready Pac; Shelby, Mich.-based Peterson Farms; and Salinas, Calif.-based Fresh Express and Taylor Farms.
âWhen an apple is dipped at one of our restaurants, you can bet it hasnât traveled far from a Washington tree,â the fact sheet reads.
McDonaldâs purchased 13 million pounds of apples in 2009. At the chainâs 191 western Washington restaurants, 88% of the apples served were grown in Washington.
â(The campaign) is really a great benefit to Tree Top,â said Ned Rawn, national accounts manager for foodservice at Tree Top.
Billboards promoting the local apples read âPicked in Yakima, Dipped in Kirkland,â for example, Rawn said.
The campaign has met with some opposition, as some bloggers and pundits have called it âlocal washing.â
âWe take food quality seriously and want our customers to know that we purchase from the countryâs top farmers, bakers and producers â many of the same trusted brands that supply your neighborhood supermarket,â Lydia Wardle, supply chain manager Northwest for McDonaldâs, said in a news release. âWe are proud to partner with local suppliers like Tree Top and Darigold (milk) to bring our customers the quality food they love.â