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Finding Swissness in the Fast Food Industry

Swissness in Fast Food

As so many tourists and expats would agree, Swiss products are expensive. Even knowing that the high price guarantees quality, it takes time (and a Swiss standard salary) to take an item straight to the cashier without hesitating (or rationalizing about it).

In my first half year living in Switzerland, I could not walk the meat aisle at a grocery store without deep sighs and melancholic gazes at every color of meat. 38 CHF/kg (about 19 CHF/lbs) for ivory chicken breast, 48 CHF/kg for tender fresh pink pork, 65 CHF/kg for alluring burgundy Angus filet... sigh.

So, I jumped out of joy (and still I do every time) when I found an orange sticker "25% off" before store closing, or "50% off" for "aging" meat...

A similar logic applies to me when I receive discount-coupon-flyers from McDonald's or Burger King.

Swissness in Fast Food


I would rather pay a bit more for a slow food restaurant when I dine out, yet just having coupons of 2 - 3 CHF discount per menu simply cheers me up or, more precisely, calms me down a bit in this pricey Swiss world.

My little secret Newly Swissed moment.

Swissness in Fast FoodSeriously, isn’t it a big deal when two meals of Big Mac, medium size fries and soft drinks (no free refills) cost 19.90 CHF instead of 39.80 CHF?

Especially since McDonald’s in Switzerland serves 100% Swiss local fine beef, I’m loving it®.

Interestingly, chicken is imported from Germany and Hungary.




Swissness in Fast FoodApart from their economic value, those flyers are actually fun to analyze. For their 2011 campaign, for example, McDonald’s picked Swiss items such as a cow bell and a Swiss Franc bill.

My favorite one interpreted the Jass (pronounced “Ya-ce” or “Yah-z”), the Swiss national card game, into McDonald’s symbols.




Except one small (but critical) mistake of making cards of Queen for Ober (male noble figure), the flyer imitates a full set of Jass cards and its game-point-recording-set of a little blackboard, a white pencil, and a beige sponge as an eraser.

Swissness in Fast Food

It is amazing to see how much marketing efforts are put into details to win traditional Swiss appetites.


Mamiko truly loves to discover Switzerland through the Newly Swissed "frame" with her Japanese eyes for details and a spark of American curiosity. She wants to connect Newly Swissed with businesses and organizations in Switzerland and expand the network.

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