McDonald’s contributes over £76 million a year to the NI economy
An independent economic report commissioned by McDonald’s to mark its 40th anniversary in the UK, reveals the business and its suppliers make a combined annual contribution of £76 million to the Northern Ireland economy.
In 2013 McDonald’s in the UK spent almost £99m sourcing goods and services from Northern Ireland, £14m of which was spent on agricultural produce. The report finds that overall the business and its supply chain is estimated to be worth £2.5 billion annually to the UK economy.
In February 1991, McDonald’s opened its first restaurant in Belfast and Northern Ireland now has 26 restaurants employing over 2,100 people locally. McDonald’s also supports a further 1,500 jobs by purchasing goods and services from businesses located here.
The ‘Serving the UK: McDonald’s at 40 Report’ was researched by Development Economics to assess the overall contribution McDonald’s has made to the UK economy, local communities, its employees, customers and suppliers since it first started operating in the UK.
Welcoming the report, Joanne Jones Head of National Operations, McDonald’s said: “I’m incredibly proud of the progress of the business in Northern Ireland since we opened our first restaurant here. We are committed to growing our business and over the next three years are seeking to expand our workforce by creating 8,000 new jobs across the UK.
“Each day we serve thousands of customers across Northern Ireland and with all of our restaurants here run by franchisees, we have helped not only to stimulate regional investment, but become one of the largest private sector employers of young people.
“With 26 restaurants in Northern Ireland our belief is that if we help communities to prosper we will prosper too. We are continuing to invest in the local economy and a new dual drive thru restaurant is scheduled to open on the Boucher Road in the summer. The major investment will create significant direct and indirect employment including a boost to the manufacturing, construction and service sectors.”
Important contributors in the McDonald’s supply chain throughout Ireland, the UK and Europe includes Kerry Food’s cheese-making facility in Coleraine, beef suppliers; WD Meats, the Foyle Food Group and Linden Foods and Delta Print and Packaging factory located in West Belfast.
Delta has had a long-term supply relationship with McDonald’s stretching back to 1998 and manufactures sustainable and compostable carton-board packaging for all McDonald’s menu items, including fry cartons and clamshells, from its primary base in Belfast. Delta produces over one billion cartons each year for McDonald’s, who has introduced the company to other elements of its international work allowing Delta to improve its operations and consistently expand.
Linden Foods, one of McDonald’s major beef suppliers in Northern Ireland has had a long term supply relationship with McDonald’s since 1999. In recent years McDonald’s has been working closely with a number of Lindens beef producers to improve their environmental awareness through McDonald’s Sustainable Beef Clubs, which aim to help beef farmers find and share ways to make changes to their working practices so they can drive greater efficiencies on their farms.
Today, McDonald’s offers all its employees access to nationally-recognised qualifications as a benefit of working for the company. Employees have the opportunity to gain a range of nationally-recognised qualifications from adult certificates in Maths and English to apprenticeships and a Foundation Degree for restaurant managers.