The Chief executive of McDonald’s, the world’s largest fast-food chain, has died from a suspected heart attack. Jim Cantalupo, 60, was taken ill during a meeting of franchise owners in Orlando, Florida, the company said. His death is a severe blow to McDonald’s at a time when the chain is trying to shed its image as a supplier of high-fat, high-salt and high-sugar food. In his 16 months at the helm, Mr Cantalupo turned the company’s fortunes round. As well as slowing its breakneck expansion programme and closing hundreds of under-performing outlets, he tried to address criticisms that McDonald’s was contributing to the obesity epidemic in the US and Europe. When Mr Cantalupo became chairman and chief executive in January last year after a management shake-up, McDonald’s was in the doldrums.
Changing tastes, the mad cow disease scare and the perception that its menu was tired had hit sales, particularly in Europe and Asia. In December 2002, McDonald’s went into the red for the first time in its 48-year history. Mr Cantalupo, a former vice-chairman and president, who had retired a year earlier, was brought back as the new boss.
The Weekly Telegraph, Issue no. 666, p. 20.
I. Answer the following questions using your own words
a. What impression do people have about McDonald’s food?
- (paragraph 1) high-fat, high-salt and high-sugar food / (paragraph 2) contributing to the obesity epidemic
b. What did Mr Cantalupo achieve in the 16 months he was in charge of McDonald’s?
II. Are the following statements true (T) or false (F)?
- a. Mr Cantalupo felt ill while meeting with French clients in Orlando: False
- b. Mr Cantalupo was already retired when he became McDonald’s boss again: True
III. Find a word or expression in the text which, in context, is similar in meaning to:
IV. Choose a, b, or c, in each question below. Only one choice is correct
1. In order to save the company Mr Cantalupo tried to…
- a) promote the company’s fast expansion.
- b) defend the company from accusations of contributing to obesity.
- c) change people’s tastes.
2. Mr Cantalupo…
- a) broke his neck in Orlando.
- b) worked for the company for 48 years.
- c) had been McDonald’s president before.
3. McDonald’s sales had declined specially in Europe and Asia due to…
- a) scare mad cows.
- b) a change in people’s food preferences.
- c) a change in McDonald’s menu.
4. In December 2002 McDonald’s…
- a) was in debt for the first time in its history.
- b) was furious with Mr Cantalupo.
- c) forced Mr Cantalupo to retire.