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TORONTO, Aug. 2, 2018 /CNW/ - To mark the 50th anniversary of the iconic Big Mac sandwich, McDonald's Canada is joining in a global celebration to launch the first fully food-backed global currency*: the MacCoin – yes, this is real life!

Starting today, MacCoins will make their debut in Canada and in more than 50 countries globally. Each coin is redeemable for one Big Mac at participating restaurants around the world.  

There will be 50,000 coins in Canada (wink wink, symbolizing 50 years of the iconic burger!). Canadians can get their hands on some of the limited edition coins by:

  • Entering the #BigMac50 contest on Twitter @McDonaldsCanada and @McDoCanada, from now until August 8th and sharing why they love the Big Mac†
  • Tuning into to their local radio stations for additional giveaways

Coins are not being distributed with purchase in Canadian restaurants.

The MacCoin is drawing inspiration from The Economist's Big Mac Index – a measure of global purchasing power. Even the Royal Canadian Numismatic Association is joining the celebration calling the MacCoin a "collectible keepsake" (see below).

After 50 years, the Big Mac continues to be one of Canada's favourite menu items. In fact, sales of the Big Mac continue to increase every year by. As the company evolves its menu to cater to guests' changing tastes, the MacCoin is here to celebrate its namesake as one of McDonald's most classic menu items.

QUOTES:

"As one of the most well-known and iconic McDonald's menu items – and business driver – around the globe and in Canada, the Big Mac deserves the celebration that the coin evokes," says Jeff McLean, Chief Financial Officer, McDonald's Canada. "The fact that in 50 years, the Big Mac has become so universally recognized it's used to measure the purchasing power of international currencies is pretty remarkable."

"The Big Mac is a cultural icon and what better way to celebrate its continuing status than to issue a commemorative coin" says Henry Nienhuis, President of the Royal Canadian Numismatic Association. "The many designs of the MacCoin reflect the incredible international network that comprises the McDonald's global system. We all know what the Big Mac is worth to us, but giving it its own limited mintage official celebratory coin, expands that worth giving us a collectible keepsake as well."

"When my great-grandfather Jim Delligatti invented the Big Mac at his grill in Uniontown, Pennsylvania, he just wanted to make his local customers happy," said Nick Delligatti, fourth-generation McDonald's owner-operator and great-grandson of Jim Delligatti, the inventor of the Big Mac. "August 2 would have been my great-grandfather's 100th birthday, and I believe he would be very proud knowing his humble sandwich has made such a lasting impression that people all around the world can enjoy it wherever they find a McDonald's."

FACTS

  • Over 6.2 million MacCoins are being distributed in more than 50 countries around the globe
  • These commemorative coins feature five unique designs, each representing a decade of the Big Mac. Each MacCoin design pulls in elements from that time in history, nodding to art, music and pop culture, while the front-side of the MacCoin celebrates the 50th anniversary of the Big Mac.
  • The seven languages featured on the front-side of the MacCoin represent many of the countries participating: Arabic, English, Indonesian, Mandarin, Portuguese, French and Spanish
  • The Big Mac sandwich was invented in Uniontown, Pennsylvania in 1967 by Jim Delligatti, one of McDonald's founder Ray Kroc's earliest franchisees, and was introduced on the national menu in the United States in 1968.
  • In 1968 Canada became the first country outside the United States to offer the Big Mac to guests.
  • The sandwich was originally sold for 45 cents.
  • The Big Mac is sold in more than 100 countries.

*The MacCoin has no cash value and is only redeemable for one free Big Mac at participating McDonald's restaurants through 2018. Visit playatmcd.com/BigMac50

†Visit McDPromotions.ca/BigMac50for the Official Rules.