One of the main components of McDonald’s ‘Follow Our Foodsteps’ campaign, to raise awareness of progressive young farming.
By taking the message on tour across the UK, to reach as many people as possible, the campaign generated 42 million views across 60 significant articles.
McDonald’s ‘Follow Our Foodsteps’ campaign looked to champion British and Irish farming and inspire young people into thinking about opportunities afforded to them within the sector, by raising awareness of different skills required. A second tier to the campaign also shone a light on McDonald’s sourcing credentials here in the UK, which includes organic milk, free range eggs, RSPCA assured pork and 100% British potatoes.
According to the Food and Drink Federation, there is a need to attract 109,000 new recruits into the food industry by 2022 as the UK population is projected to rise by 4.4 million in the next decade. As one of the biggest customers of British agriculture, McDonald’s led the way with this campaign in kick starting a new recruitment drive needed to safeguard farming’s future.
McDonald’s commissioned Make Real to create an immersive experience to simulate real farming activities required in the job and ‘Top of the Crop’ was born.
‘Top of the Crop’ is a two-player ‘Hero VR’ realistic potato harvesting game, with participants competing against each other to harvest the most potatoes, collecting quality, unbruised crops. Features include high score table, honkable horn and realistic pedals and steering wheel built into gaming cabinets.
In addition, the product was co-created (designed and tested) with progressive young farmers. Three young female farmers who were undertaking the 12-month McDonald’s progressive young farmers programme and agronomists / farmers from McCain were involved in co-creation at every stage of the project ensuring delivery was as true to life as it could be.
It was vitally important to take ‘Follow our Foodsteps’ to the people. ‘Top of the Crop’ and other campaign assets were hosted on a touring truck, which has already visited a number of agricultural / skills events around the UK, viewed and experienced by millions. This moving feat presented considerable technical challenges to be overcome. Make Real designed and installed the technical solution in a VR truck created for the purpose which was nine months in the making.
Whilst being a big hit with many attendees across the eight events (30+ minute queues to play the game throughout the summer), ‘Follow our Foodsteps’ secured a considerable volume of quality press coverage where ‘Top of the Crop’ was the stand out asset.
“As a nation, we have never been more food-focussed. The eating out market is growing but this passion for food is masking a lack of understanding around how food is produced and the vital role our farming and food industries play in growing, sourcing and producing quality ingredients. As the biggest customer of British and Irish farming, we wanted to lift the lid on the passion and skills that exist at every stage of the process, from farm to front-counter.
By bringing together tech developers with farmers and food experts, we created an immersive virtual reality experience that allows people to follow in the footsteps of farmers, suppliers and our crew, bringing the best of UK food production from the countryside to communities across the UK. With Make Real this campaign has allowed us to build pride in British farming, challenge outdated stereotypes and celebrate the best of food and farming in the UK today.” – McDonald’s UK