Monday, August 13, 2012

McDonald's Hot Dogs for Breakfast in China

Previously I discussed the existence of imitators which suggests that much room remains in China for McDonald's to grow. I have also mentioned the positive impression some Chinese have of the U.S. because of their experience working at McDonald's and how McDonald's has localized some of its offerings for the Chinese market -- although it has not gone to the lengths of KFC's circumcision parties.

Today I noticed a McDonald's in China offering an item that is quite popular in the U.S.:

sign for a breakfast hot dog set meal at McDonald's in China
¥14.50 is about U.S. $2.30

This was the first time I had ever seen hot dogs for sale at a McDonald's anywhere, let alone in China. But what was even more curious to me was that they were being offered at a time I would not expect -- breakfast.

In China, hot dogs in a bun are not commonly available. They can be found at places such as Dairy Queen and 7-Eleven, but those chain stores are far from ubiquitous in China. However, hot dogs (or hot-dog-like objects) sans bun are not uncommon in many regions. For example, almost two years ago I saw this vendor selling hot dogs in Mudanjiang, Heilongjiang province:

hot dogs for sale in Mudanjiang, China
Another type of "hot dog" was also available in Mudanjiang -- a topic for another day

McDonald's has previously tried selling hotdogs in Canada, Japan, and the U.S but they never took off. McDonald's is possibly having better luck in China despite the Shanghaiist claiming last year that the hot dogs were a "travesty". The article does not provide many details and a promised future update does not seem to have ever been published. But since the hot dogs have been around for at least almost a year, there is reason to believe there has been a positive response. It would be interesting to discover why McDonald's may have found success selling hot dogs in China but not elsewhere.

Anyways, if you are looking for a food review I will have to disappoint. Maybe if the hot dog in the photo had been topped with brown mustard and relish I would have found it to be a more tempting choice for breakfast.

Update: More on hot dogs for breakfast in China (with a squid ink twist) here.


  1. Mmmmmm...a healthy hotdog breakfast.

    1. Those issues have crossed my mind on a number of occasions while eating at a McDonald's or KFC.