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The McRib Is Returning to McDonald’s Nationwide for the First Time Since 2012

Plus, Tyson is replacing federal inspectors with its own employees, and more news to start your day

McRib sandwich in a cardboard box Ruocaled/Shutterstock
Jaya Saxena is a Correspondent at, and the series editor of Best American Food Writing. She explores wide ranging topics like labor, identity, and food culture.

After eight years, the sandwich will return on December 2

McDonald’s McRib sandwich has evolved into a cult obsession ever since its launch in 1981. That’s likely because it’s not a permanent fixture on the menu in the U.S. — the chain only rolls it out in short bursts, or in certain regions, and the sandwich has inspired entire websites and groups devoted to it. And now, McDonald’s is releasing the McRib nationwide for the first time since 2012.

McDonald’s has found recent success with its Travis Scott and J Balvin meals, but the chain is still struggling. Over the summer, it reported breakfast sales had slumped, since there were far fewer morning commuters on the road, and sales overall have been down because of government-mandated closures. The McRib is probably an attempt to reinvigorate customers over a “rare” item. Or maybe just to distract from the multiple racial discrimination lawsuits.

And in other news...

  • In the spring, Tyson proposed a waiver that would replace the work of federal inspectors with its own employees. The USDA granted it, so starting in January, inspection work at its beef processing plant in Holcomb, Kansas will be done internally. Seems sound! [Modern Farmer]
  • A man sued Canada Dry over a lack of “real ginger,” and the company settled for $200k after years and years of litigation. [Vice]
  • Another look at how easily COVID-19 can spread in bars. [El Pais]
  • A study of workers at a Boston grocery store found 20% tested positive for COVID-19, and likely became a “significant transmission source” because they were asymptomatic. [CNN]
  • The effort to restore Caribou populations, which are central to Indigenous Canadian foodways. [Civil Eats]
  • Australian officials are concerned about Uber Eats’s policy of photographing IDs for liquor deliveries. [The Guardian]
  • No matter who wins the election, you won’t be able to get a beer with him. [NYTimes]
  • Restaurant owners are concerned that no one wants to dine indoors. [NBC]
  • A bunch of Chicago restaurants spent a lot of money on air filtration equipment to make indoor dining safer, only to have their dining rooms shut down again. It’s almost like the constant back-and-forth of regulations makes things worse for small businesses. [Chicago Tribune]
  • Here’s hoping bee-less honey is more than just honey-flavored corn syrup. [Fooddive]
  • Don’t expect the typical turkey meal this Thanksgiving. [WaPo]
  • Mentally, I’m the fountain: