Social Mixer 2024 Singapore
McDonald's MY cops flak for CNY 'yee sang' rendition

McDonald's MY cops flak for CNY 'yee sang' rendition

share on

McDonald's Malaysia's brand sentiments over the last 48 hours have plummeted to 86.9% negative and 4.4% positive after the launch of its new version of a "yee sang" salad for Chinese New Year (CNY) which has left netizens divided, according to media intelligence firm CARMA.

Called the 'Prosperity Lou Lou' box, consumers will receive three packets of large curly fries and a six-piece box of chicken McNuggets along with its classic 'Sweet ‘N Sour' sauce. They can then toss it together just like a typical "yee sang" salad which is typically eaten during CNY by families for good fortune. 

During the celebrations, family members and friends will take turns adding ingredients such as carrots, radish, fish, peanuts, plum sauce and crackers to the "yee sang". Each ingredient represents a specific blessing such as good luck, wealth or abundance. They will then, together, toss the salad into the air before eating it. It is believed that the higher you toss the salad, the better your fortune and prospects will be for the upcoming year. 

Don't miss: BDS Malaysia brand sentiments plummet as McDonald's sues for boycott damages

While McDonald's Malaysia has limited comments on its social media posts, checks by MARKETING-INTERACTIVE saw that posts about the 'Prosperity Lou Lou' were drawing comments such as that this was an "abomination". Many also said that this defeated the meaning of the activity.

CARMA added that McDonald's 30-day social sentiments in Malaysia are 61.9% negative and 3.6% positive. This is also largely because McDonald's is currently being boycotted in Malaysia. 

This came after Gerbang Alaf Restaurants, the local licensee of McDonald's in Malaysia, sued a movement promoting boycotts against Israel for false and defamatory statements for allegedly inciting the public to boycott McDonald's Malaysia which has led to a loss of profits and jobs. It claimed earlier this month that these statements hurt its business and are currently seeking damages amounting to US$1.31 million.

"McDonald's Malaysia wish to confirm that based on external legal advice, we have filed a civil suit against Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS Malaysia) to protect our rights and interests in accordance with the law," said McDonald's Malaysia when MARKETING-INTERACTIVE reached out. 

Despite this, according to media intelligence firm Trusecope at the time, a segment of the Malaysian online community maintains that boycotting McDonald’s Malaysia is justifiable, citing ongoing royalty payments to its Israeli parent company, despite Saudi Arabian ownership. Some even propose rebranding McDonald's in Malaysia, akin to Russia's strategy following the suspension of McDonald's operations there, to cease royalty payments to Israel.

Currently, CARMA has noted that McDonald's Malaysia's word cloud includes words such as 'Palestinians', 'boycott McDonalds' and 'Boycott'.

Related articles: 

McDonald’s MY aims for 750 outlets by 2030 amidst boycott: Is the plan feasible? 
McDonald's MY sues Israel boycott movement for millions in damages 
Zara's brand sentiments plummet after controversial ad resembling Gaza victims

share on

Follow us on our Telegram channel for the latest updates in the marketing and advertising scene.

Free newsletter

Get the daily lowdown on Asia's top marketing stories.

We break down the big and messy topics of the day so you're updated on the most important developments in Asia's marketing development – for free.

subscribe now open in new window