Next at McDonald’s: All-day breakfast and delivery?

Nadine Kalinauskas
Shine On

Dreaming of an Egg McMuffin for a mid-afternoon pick-me-up? That dream might soon become a reality.

In an interview
with CNBC, McDonald's CEO Don Thompson reveals that the company is well aware of the demand for its breakfast menu outside of current breakfast hours — and would even consider serving up hash browns and sausage burritos all day.

He says that McDonald's is working on "innovative ways of us expanding the breakfast hours, and some of those things we'll be seeing here in the near future."

But the idea that you can mow down on McDonald's delicious breakfast offerings at all hours of the day is not without criticism. Vibe calls the in-development sales-boosting strategy of an all-day breakfast "an idea 20 years too late."

And it's true to some extent -- people have been whining about missing the breakfast cut-off time for decades.

RewardMe's Joseph Yi argues that McDonald's currently has a "law of scarcity" advantage in not offering its breakfast menu all day as many of its competitors now do.

"The law of scarcity states that when a person perceives that something or someone that they want is in limited quantity that the value of the object will be greater than if it were to be abundant and available," Yi writes.

He then compares a limited breakfast window to Nike's "get them while you can" Air Jordans:

"Yes, McDonald’s may sell more by changing the hours during which they offer their breakfast menu, but just how Air Jordans have branded themselves as the exclusive shoe for basketball enthusiasts, so has McDonald’s in becoming the go-to fast food destination for breakfast."

McDonald's first hinted at the chance of all-day breakfast in 2006. Some overseas chains already offer it. The company is now considering introducing that availability to its American customers.

Last year, the chain launched a "Breakfast After Midnight" menu at some of its Utah and Massachusetts 24-hour locations.

And if a late-night breakfast snack isn't good enough, McDonald's is considering something that might make it even better: Delivery.

In the same CNET interview, Thompson also entertains the idea of delivery in densely populated areas of the U.S., saying that "delivery is a big, big opportunity, particularly in areas where you don't have drive-throughs."

McDonald's currently offers delivery in about 20 per cent of its outlets — all overseas.

Burger King has a head start in the American fast-food market, already offering delivery in a handful of large American cities.

Of course, what's successful in U.S. will eventually come to Canada, or so we hope. So be on the lookout for all-day breakfast in the near-ish future.

And if delivery doesn't make it to a city near you, you can always just stockpile those burgers. Apparently they don't get mouldy — even after 14 years.