Posted: Jun 13, 2012 7:29 AM by Kay Rossi - MTN News
Updated: Jun 13, 2012 7:45 AM
GREAT FALLS - McDonald's iconic golden arches symbolize the largest fast food chain in the country, with 32,000 locations in more than 100 countries worldwide.
But in the northwest, a little bit of Great Falls goes into every bite.
More than 450 northwestern McDonald's locations, across Idaho, Montana, Oregon and Washington, collectively buy 96 percent of the wheat for their buns from the Great Falls area. Himmelberg said the remainder comes from North Dakota.
"It's important that we're able to get products from the local area and help the farmers out," said Bill Himmelberg, McDonald's Great Falls area operator. "They do a great job at producing a high quality product and we're happy to be able to use that product in our stuff here at McDonald's."
Montana Farmers Union communications director Chris Christiaens said it benefits them, too. "We save all of that transportation cost, we save just a lot of money in that process and that ends up being money in the pocket of the producer."
Himmelberg said besides supporting local farmers, McDonald's is one of the top 10 employers in Great Falls, with 300 people working at three locations around town.
"We're proud of that and proud of all our employees do, and that we're able to give back," Himmelberg said.