McD's cancels McAfrika rollout

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[Oslo, Norway] McDonald's Corp. has canceled plans to roll out the controversial McAfrika sandwich, introduced in a promotion here Aug. 22, in all 70 of its Norwegian restaurants. In an example of local product innovation that turned into a marketing disaster, McDonald's Norway CEO Theo Hold acknowledged on Norwegian TV on Sept. 4 that introducing a fast-food McAfrika sandwich at a time of growing famine in Africa was "coincidental and unfortunate." In a deal with aid organizations, McDonald's will offer the sandwich only in its 15 Oslo outlets, where aid agencies can place collection boxes and posters. McDonald's said it has sold 550,000 McAfrika spicy-beef sandwiches in pita bread. "There was nothing wrong with the McAfrika name," said Tarje Wanvik, head of Norwegian Church Aid. "It was the timing. McDonald's chose to launch this new product as a famine in Africa was starting."
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