If you grew up going to McDonald’s you’re familiar with the Happy Meal, something so small has brought smiles to millions of children in various parts of the world for decades. If you were to type in who created the Happy Meal online what automatically comes up is Bob Bernstein. The internet states that Bob Bernstein created the classic box the Happy Meal is packaged in however, the creator behind the concept of the Happy Meal was a woman named Yolanda Fernández de Cofiña.
According to history, she developed the idea after the first McDonald’s restaurant opened in Guatemala in 1974. An article written on the website Mashed states, “She noticed that the meals were a bit too large for children, and she created a smaller meal specifically designed for younger diners. It included a hamburger, small order of fries, and a hot fudge sundae for dessert — all conveniently packaged in one bag.” By showing interest in the children’s eating habits and valuing their dining experience she made the restaurant what it is today: a place where families can enjoy each other’s company and a meal together.
Some of my happiest memories from my childhood were when my dad would come home from McDonald’s with happy meals for my siblings and I. We’d always be excited to receive the toys that were inside and play with them after we finished our meal. I am grateful to Yolanda Fernández de Cofiña for creating something that will hold a special place in my heart. Even though she passed away in 2021 her legacy will continue to live on in the product that she has created and the memories that she has brought to billions of people.