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Fresh beef comes to McDonald’s burgers

Frozen beef is out. Fresh beef is coming to 570 McDonald’s locations throughout the  tri-state area starting Wednesday.

The burgers, cooked fresh when ordered, marks the biggest change to McDonald’s since the launch of All Day Breakfast, a company spokesperson said. Order a Quarter Pounder or Signature Crafted Recipe burger, and you’ll get one made with fresh beef. The change does not apply to Big Macs and regular hamburgers and cheeseburgers.

McDonald’s has changed its ingredients and menu to shift customers’ perceptions about the food. Its latest move also responds to rivals such as Wendy’s targeting McDonald’s frozen beef in ad campaigns.

“This coincides with a national consumer demand for items that they perceive as healthier and higher quality,” Ernest Baskin, an assistant professor of food marketing at St. Joseph’s University, previously said.

In 2016, McDonald’s removed artificial preservatives from Chicken McNuggets. Last year, it took out preservatives from ice cream.

McDonald’s has been tinkering with Happy Meals for several years in response to pressure from public health groups, and to lawsuits for using toys to market to kids.

In 2011, it added apple slices to Happy Meals. Soda came off the menu in 2013. Last year, McDonald’s replaced Minute Maid apple juice with its lower-sugar Honest Kids brand juice. And the company said last month that it will phase out cheeseburgers from the menu, although parents can still ask for them.