||This article needs additional citations for verification. (January 2011)|
Supersize or Super-Size is an out-of-date term used by McDonald's to refer to larger than normal portions of their French fries and soft drinks, generally used as an upsell option in the early 2000’s. The supersize drink was 42 fl oz (1.24 liters), while the supersize french fries were served in a 7-ounce carton.
In the United States, McDonald's removed the Super-Size option from their regular menu in March, 2004, though some international McDonald's had already removed the option as early as 2001. On occasion, McDonald's will bring back the Super-Size portion sizes under promotional names such as "Summer Size" or "Extra Large Size", on an advertising basis. Franchise McDonald's may also still offer the option.
McDonald's introduced the Super Size option in the summer of 1987 as a promotion, but later brought them on board as a permanent menu option.
Supersizing was the idea of David Wallerstein, a McDonald's executive who had formerly worked for a chain of movie theaters in the 1950s and 1960s. While working at the movie theaters, Wallerstein was tasked with boosting sales of popcorn and soda. Wallerstein discovered that it was very difficult to persuade customers to purchase more than one soda or bag of popcorn.
"I soon discovered that customers could be persuaded to pay for more up front. Although McDonald's executive Ray Kroc was initially skeptical of Wallerstein's proposal to supersize McDonald's meals (believing that people who wanted more fries would buy two bags), he eventually agreed to try Wallerstein's idea. The sales results led to the program being rolled out in the 1990's throughout McDonald's restaurants."
Adaptation and Phase-out 
Wendy's discontinued use of their Biggie trademark in 2006, but increased regular portion sizes to match previous Biggie sizes. In 2010, Burger King rearranged their menu in a similar fashion.
The 2004 documentary Super Size Me, which follows the producer's month-long McDonald's diet, is often credited with associating the term McDonald's Super Size with obesity and unhealthy portion sizes. Shortly after the documentary premiered, McDonald's USA removed the option from their menus. However, at least one international McDonald's had removed the option three years prior, and McDonald's states that the movie had no impact on their decision.
- Andrew F. Smith (2006), "Supersizing", Encyclopedia of junk food and fast food, Greenwood Publishing Group, p. 259, ISBN 978-0-313-33527-3
See also