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Do you want fries with that...gold medal?

NZ cyclist Sarah Ulmer is one of many 'Olympic Athletes, Hopefuls and Moms' enlisted by McDonald's in a "multi-faceted education campaign to help consumers better understand the keys to living balanced, active lives," said CEO Jim Skinner today. The "it's what i eat and what i do ... i'm lovin' it" campaign will feature Ronald McDonald in health vids...
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To prevent going into irony over-drive, it's best to run with the full press release but check out this quote from International Olympic Committee (IOC) president Jacques Rogge:

"McDonald's has always embraced and supported the true Olympic ideals and values, such as friendship, teamwork and joy in effort. The IOC promotes health through sport and commends all efforts to reach out to children and families to encourage living in a healthy way. We congratulate McDonald's for their approach and for this major initiative."

PRESS RELEASE

McDonald's(R) Launches New Worldwide Balanced, Active Lifestyles Public Awareness Campaign

'it's what i eat and what i do(TM) ... i'm lovin' it(TM)'

NEW YORK, March 8: McDonald's Chief Executive Officer Jim Skinner today unveiled a major company initiative centered on a multi-faceted education campaign to help consumers better understand the keys to living balanced, active lives -- "it's what i eat and what i do ... i'm lovin' it." The theme, which underscores the important interplay between eating right and staying active, forms the creative core of the program, which takes an innovative and educational approach to advertising and marketing.

"One of the best things we can do is communicate the importance of energy balance in an engaging and simple way," said Skinner. "'it's what i eat and what i do ... i'm lovin' it' is a great new message within our 'i'm lovin' it' theme, and will tie all our balanced, active lifestyles messages together. We are listening to our customers and committed to taking leadership action where we can make a difference."

The worldwide effort features several key components:

New Advertising and Creative Approach

-- McDonald's today unveiled a new advertising approach and a variety of

new creative concepts that bring the energy balance message to life

through the expression, "it's what i eat and what i do ... i'm lovin'

it." This approach builds on "i'm lovin' it," McDonald's first-ever

global marketing campaign which debuted in September 2003. The new

balanced, active lifestyles platform is designed to inspire McDonald's

customers to improve their overall well being. The creative approach

will be reflected in television commercials, print and outdoor

advertising, packaging tips, trayliners, education brochures and a

variety of other communications as it is rolled out around the world.

Olympic tennis champions Venus and Serena Williams and snowboarding

hopeful Crispin Lipscomb, along with balanced, active lifestyles

advocate Ronald McDonald(R), are featured in creative developed by Leo

Burnett USA.

-- McDonald's intent is to evolve the content of its communications to

children to have a greater focus on balanced, active lifestyles

messages. McDonald's is committing significant global resources to

educate kids and families about energy balance as part of its

commitment to address consumers' lifestyles needs.

-- New packaging that includes well being tips will appear in major

markets throughout the world. Educational tips will be communicated on

Happy Meals in the U.S. in March and standard packaging in the U.S. as

early as May, followed by standard packaging rollouts in Canada and

Latin America.

"Our entire worldwide system looks forward to bringing this balanced, active lifestyles commitment and education campaign to our customers," said Mike Roberts, McDonald's President and Chief Operating Officer. "Working across the globe to be a part of the solution to our customers' lifestyles needs continues to be a top priority for McDonald's."

Olympic Athletes, Hopefuls and Moms

-- A team of Olympic Athletes, Hopefuls and Moms -- athletes who are moms

themselves or are "life coaches" to their own Olympic hopefuls -- will

bring this effort to life in countries throughout the world. These role

models, who can inspire young people and others through their

compelling personal stories, will share their perspectives on how to

achieve and maintain balanced, active lives.

Leading the global team are world-renowned hockey player Wayne Gretzky

(Canada) and five-time gold-medal winning speed skater Bonnie Blair

(U.S.A.). Other team members include:

-- Janet Evans - Swimmer (U.S.A.)

-- Vonetta Flowers - Bobsledder (U.S.A.)

-- Amy Hatch - Mother of two figure skating hopefuls (U.S.A.)

-- Steven Lopez - Taekwondo (U.S.A.)

-- Diego Hypolito - Gymnast (Brazil)

-- Sarah Ulmer - Cyclist (New Zealand)

-- Guo Jingjing - Diver (China)

-- Yao Ming - Basketball (China)

-- In many of McDonald's 119 countries, McDonald's will coordinate with

the National Olympic Committees to assemble local teams of Olympic

athletes, hopefuls and moms to support and implement public service

programs, educational initiatives and sports and fitness events that

focus on promoting balanced, active lifestyles in their own

communities.

"McDonald's has always embraced and supported the true Olympic ideals and values, such as friendship, teamwork and joy in effort," said International Olympic Committee (IOC) President Jacques Rogge. "The IOC promotes health through sport and commends all efforts to reach out to children and families to encourage living in a healthy way. We congratulate McDonald's for their approach and for this major initiative."

Ronald McDonald

Ronald McDonald will continue to expand his role as a major advocate for balanced, active lifestyles. He will help inform children and parents around the world in a fun and meaningful way to eat well and stay active. This fall, McDonald's will release the first two in a series of Ronald McDonald videos intended to show kids how much fun they can have when they activate their bodies, their minds, and their imaginations. The videos will be launched in more than 50 countries and feature a dozen different languages.

GoActive.com

McDonald's has refreshed its GoActive.com website with a new look and feel focusing on moms and families. The website includes relevant, balanced, active lifestyles tips and a Family Fitness Tool Kit. The site also features a new "Finding Your Balance" quiz that offers a global "pulse check" into the fitness and well being knowledge of consumers. High-profile athletes' stories, third-party comments, consumer-friendly content and an innovative "virtual trainer" program also are featured.

Expert Advice

McDonald's Global Advisory Council on balanced, active lifestyles is comprised of outside experts in the areas of nutrition, wellness and activity. The Council has provided input and guidance to McDonald's on the company's three focus areas of menu choice and variety, education outreach and nutrition information, and promoting physical fitness.

"The whole concept of energy balance has been a challenging one for health professionals alone to communicate," said Dr. Paul Gately, McDonald's Global Advisory Council Member and Carnegie Professor of Exercise and Obesity, Leeds Metropolitan University, United Kingdom. "As members of McDonald's Advisory Council, we're pleased to see the company taking the right steps by focusing on this critically important message."

About McDonald's

McDonald's is the leading global foodservice retailer with more than 30,000 local restaurants serving nearly 50 million people in more than 119 countries each day. Approximately 70 percent of McDonald's restaurants worldwide are owned and operated by independent, local businessmen and women.

About McDonald's Balanced, Active Lifestyles Progress

McDonald's Balanced, Active Lifestyles program is built on three strategic pillars: increasing menu choice, promoting physical activity, and providing more accessible information. For a detailed summary of the progress we continue to make, see: http://www.balance.mcdonalds.com/ or the Balanced, Active Lifestyles chapters of McDonald's 2004 Worldwide Corporate Responsibility Report, available at: http://www.mcdonalds.com/.../sr_report.html.

About McDonald's and the Olympics

McDonald's became an official sponsor of the Olympic Games in 1976 and has a long-standing commitment to the Olympic Movement. The TORINO 2006 Olympic Winter Games will mark McDonald's fifth Olympic Games as a Worldwide Sponsor and sixth as the Official Restaurant of the Olympic Games. Since 2004, McDonald's has leveraged its sponsorship of the Olympic Games, as well as relationships with the IOC and Olympians around the world, to inspire physical fitness and activity among communities worldwide through the Olympic Day Run and other local sporting events.

for updates and photos from McDonald's events.

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