It is a dream of many a McDonald’s patron to roll out of bed at 11:30am and grab an Egg McMuffin and hash browns. Until now, McDonald’s considered offering both its breakfast and lunch menu logistically impossible, given the tight kitchen spaces of the restaurants.
The AP reports that “McDonald’s is in the early stages of looking at whether it can make breakfast available later in the day.“
The burger chain wants to tailor its offerings to “those coveted customers in their 20s and 30s known as Millennials,” reports AP, which is why it is looking into extending its breakfast hours.
Jeff Stratton, head of McDonald’s USA, tells AP, ”We know, as an example, that breakfast on the weekend cut off at 10:30 doesn’t go very well.” Although, Stratton has been cagey about further details, and said, ”Well, we’re just beginning…We’re just taking a look at it.”
While there are no tests currently in place for extended breakfast hours, McDonald’s has been getting closer to making breakfast throughout the day a reality as it faces slumping sales and heightened competition. AP reports,
“The push to make breakfast outside normal hours also reflects how McDonald’s is working to keep pace with shifting habits. In particular, executives have noted that customers increasingly want foods personalized to their tastes and schedules.”
Just last year, the company began offering an “After Midnight” menu at select locations. The menu, available from midnight to 4 a.m., consisted of a limited mix of breakfast and lunch items so kitchen operations wouldn’t be overwhelmed.
In terms of extending breakfast hours, AP notes that “McDonald’s is known for treading extremely carefully when discussing any tests or potential changes.” The company has a large network of franchisees that it would have to get on board with executing McMuffins and Sausage Biscuits all day.
About 90 percent of the company’s more than 14,000 U.S. restaurants are run by franchisees, who would have to train employees and buy new equipment to accommodate changes.