Macca’s celebrates 50 years in Australia

By Sarah Stowe | 21 Jun 2021 View comments

The golden arches is celebrating. Macca’s is launching three months of celebrations to mark its 50 years in Australia.

The celebrations will include a new range of promotions, menu items and unique collaborations from June until the end of August.

In 1971 the first golden arches restaurant in Australia was unveiled in Yagoona, Sydney. Today the mega brand counts 1,009 restaurants across the country, employing more than 107,000 people and serving two million Aussies every day.

Andrew Gregory, CEO McDonald’s Australia, said “We are extremely proud to be celebrating 50 years of providing great tasting food and supporting our customers, people and communities in Australia.

“We are firm believers in the quality and taste of Australian home grown produce and have always been and remain committed to our local suppliers and supporting more than 15,000 Aussie farmers annually.

“Many of our long-standing partnerships with Aussie suppliers and farmers have spanned multiple decades. Working together, we continue to find new ways to constantly improve the Macca’s experience for our customers.”

Today, Macca’s is the largest employer of young people in the country, having created job opportunities for more than 1.5 million Australians throughout the past 50 years. Each new restaurant creates about 120 employment opportunities.

Since McDonald’s became a Registered Training Organisation in 1995, more than 47,000 employees have completed national recognised training courses in retail and food safety.

“We’re proud of our history and the positive difference our 245 franchisees continue to make by providing the best first job in Australia for young people,” said Gregory.

“Our franchisees play a critical role in making Macca’s one of the most trusted brands in Australia and we’re looking forward to celebrating our 50th birthday with our people and customers.”

 McDonald’s will announce fresh birthday initiatives weekly.

Reasons to celebrate

50 years of McDonald’s Australia

Highlights of half a century in Australia include the 2020 opening of Restaurant 1000, its sustainability flagship in Australia and the launch of the McCafe concept. Now there are 906 McCafes across the country.

Since the launch of McDelivery, the business has made more than 54 million deliveries.

Other notable firsts

  • Peter Ritchie was the first employee and CEO
  • Albert Gay was the first franchisees, joining Macca’s in 1974
  • The first drive-through was opened in 1978 at Warrawong. Now there are 840 drive-throughs.

Over 50 years in Australia Macca’s has:

  • Sold 1.9 billion cheeseburgers
  • Sold more than 1.1 billion Big Macs
  • Injected over $9bn into the Australian agriculture industry with 100 per cent of beef, chicken, potatoes, wheat flour, lettuce and tomatoes locally sourced.
  • Hosted more than 700,000 birthday parties
  • Raised more than $56 million for Ronald McDonald House Charities through its annual McHappy Day.