Remember the days where you used to look forward to getting a happy meal not for the food, but for the awesome collectible toys that came with it?
Well, those days are back because this year marks McDonald’s 40th anniversary of the company’s first Happy Meal, the kids meal that helped the fast food chain achieve supremacy. To celebrate, a Happy Meal – which contains the option of a hamburger or chicken nuggets, a side like french fries and a drink – will include some of McDonald’s most popular toys over the past four decades, including Ty Beanie Babies’ Patti the Platypus and the Tamagotchi.
From November 7-11, McDonald’s will sell a “Surprise Happy Meal” in 90 countries that will include the throwback toys. The toys will be available at participating U.S. restaurants while supplies last.
The very first “Happy Meal” was the Circus Wagon Happy Meal, as it was originally known, which launched in the United States in June 1979. The meal included a hamburger or cheeseburger, fries and cookies, as well as some earlier Happy Meal toys such as a McDoodler stencil, McWrist wallet and a spinning top.
After becoming a hit, the Happy Meal expanded internationally in 1982. By 1984, McDonald’s added McNuggets as a Happy Meal option. In 1998, the first-ever global Happy Meal debuted with toys from the Disney film ‘Mulan.’
As we come into the mid-2000’s, customers’ eating habits took a healthier turn, so McDonald’s made menu changes to the Happy Meal. In 2012, McDonald’s made the french fries portion smaller and added fruit as an option. In 2013, it added milk or juice as beverage choices.