food and drink

McDonald's Japan is Giving Away a Real Gold Nugget in a McNugget Meal

Fast food enthusiasts should be extremely cautious when biting into a McDonald’s chicken McNugget in Japan. You could end up winning an extremely valuable prize and then end up having to use it to pay for new teeth.

The Contest

Commencing June 8, 2016, McDonald’s Japan will hold a national promotional contest where the grand prize offered is a real gold nugget hidden inside a 5-piece chicken McNugget meal. Following in the footsteps of Grimace and the Hamburgler, McDonald’s Japan is also introducing a new corporate mascot known as the Mysterious Nugget Thief to help out with the contest. The Mysterious Nugget Thief wears a gold-colored jacket, a black top hat with a red ribbon around it, a black mask and red bow tie. He also loves to steal chicken nuggets, nuggets of gold which look like chicken nuggets and to generally confound McNugget eaters.

The Clues

McDonald’s Japan will use their official Twitter feed to leave clues about the identity of the Mysterious Nugget Thief and clues about where he will strike next.  The Mysterious Nugget Thief himself will also leave clues on Twitter and personally visit McDonald’s restaurants throughout Japan to leave clues. McDonald’s customers are encouraged to take to Twitter to analyze clues, guess the identity of the Mysterious Nugget Thief and guess which McDonald’s in Japan is the one with the real gold nugget in a value meal. Anyone who actually meets the Mysterious Nugget Thief in person or find any clues are encouraged to share their experiences on the McDonald’s Japan Twitter feed.

The Prize

The 18-karat gold nugget to be given away is a solid mass of gold that weighs about 1.8 ounces and may be worth about $1,500. For every day of the contest, one Twitter user will be chosen from the McDonald’s Japan Twitter feed to win a coupon book entitling the winner to 39 consecutive days of free 5-piece McNugget meals. The 5-piece chicken McNugget meal costs about $1.35. McDonald’s Japan also sells a 15-piece meal for about $3.55. The gold nugget will only be hidden in a 5-piece meal, however. Specialty limited edition sauces, including Creamy Cheese sauce and Fruit Curry sauce, will also be available for the duration of the contest as well.

Wrapping Up

McDonald’s Japan has just weathered an extended period of bad PR. There was a tainted-food scandal involving their chicken which hurt their image, sluggish sales forced the closure of almost 200 McDonald's franchises in Japan and dozens of corporate staff workers were let go just within the past few years. The gold nugget contest has been viewed by fast food industry insiders as a ploy to improve PR, increase profits and reinvigorate public image. The contest will end on June 28, 2016. If you are traveling through Japan during this period, a stopover to the golden arches may be worth your while.

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