McDonald's invents 'supremely superfluous' Frork utensil to pitch its new burgers

Key Points
  • McDonald's released a mock infomercial to promote its Signature Crafted Recipe burgers and chicken sandwiches.
  • The infomercial featured the "Frork," a fry-fork hybrid designed to scoop up all the toppings that fall out of the new sandwiches.
McDonald's invents a new utensil
McDonald's invents a new utensil

McDonald's wants to get the word out that sandwiches in its new Signature Crafted Recipes line-up are so packed with toppings that you'll need a special utensil to deal with it — the Frork.

The burger giant is touting its Frork, basically a fork with French fries as the prongs, in a mock infomercial featuring pitchman Anthony Sullivan.

"Will the Frork change your life? Probably not." Sullivan said in the video. "Will the Frork improve your Signature Crafted Recipes eating experience? I mean, sure ... maybe."

McDonald's said the "superfluous" utensil is designed to help customers scoop up every last bit of the company's new premium burgers and chicken sandwiches.

The Signature Sandwiches are customizable, upscale burgers and chicken sandwiches that feature flavors like Pico Guacamole, Sweet BBQ Bacon, and Maple Bacon Dijon.

"We started with All Day Breakfast, updated our Chicken McNuggets, offered new Mac sandwich sizes for every occasion and now we're introducing Signature Crafted Recipes because they are inspired by our customers," Michael Haracz, McDonald's chef, said in a statement. "And while the Frork is supremely superfluous, it shows that McDonald's is willing to do whatever it takes to help them enjoy every last bite."

McDonald's Signature Crafted Recipes are just another step in the Golden Arches' attempt to win back business. Part of that process is ditching artificial ingredients in some items and offering a wider variety of upscale products. McDonald's has already removed artificial preservatives from chicken McNuggets and it removed high fructose corn syrup from its buns. The company plans to swap out frozen beef patties for fresh ones in its Quarter Pounder burgers across the U.S. by mid-2018.

McDonald's: The Street is lovin' it
McDonald's: The Street is lovin' it

The chain's stores will also be getting an update with the addition of self-service ordering kiosks and table service at 650 restaurants this year, bringing the total to nearly 2,500. Employees will now spend more time in the front of the restaurant, delivering food directly to the tables and offering traditional dining hospitality.

In addition, the company has updated its uniforms to be more stylish and contemporary.

"Not everything [McDonald's] is trying will work, but some of it will," Mark Kalinowski, a Nomura-Instinet analyst, told CNBC. "But that's the point. You don't want a McDonald's that sits back and is complacent and happy with all the successes it's achieved in the past. You want a McDonald's that continues to evolve for the better and that's what McDonald's is doing under [CEO Steve Easterbrook's] leadership."

This isn't the first time that the company has tried to add upscale offerings. In the '90s, McDonald's rolled out the Arch Deluxe to try to appeal to those with a more sophisticated palate, but it was a massive flop. McDonald's was more successful with its Angus burger, which had a four-year run beginning in 2009. Ultimately, the pricey burger, which cost between $4 and $5, was removed from the menu as consumers shifted more toward its value-conscious Dollar Menu.

A limited supply of Frorks will be available with the purchase of a Signature Crafted Recipes sandwich on May 5 at participating restaurants. These sandwiches sell for between $4.99 and $5.19.

In true infomercial style, the ad features a toll-free number that gives callers a chance to get a free Frork or a coupon for a free Signature Crafted Recipes sandwich.