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The Inventor of the Big Mac Has Died

The Inventor of the Big Mac Has Died

Delligatti cooked up the Big Mac in 1965 when, as one of McDonalds' early franchisees, he felt the menu needed a rival for local burger bars' two-storey offerings.

Mr. Delligatti, who also played an instrumental role in the creation of McDonald's breakfast menu, did not receive a financial windfall from the Big Mac. He told the Associated Press in 2006 that McDonald's resisted the idea at first because its core range of hamburgers and cheese burgers was selling solidly. But why would anybody want an extra bun in the middle of their hamburger? The Big Mac originally sold for 45 cents.

Jim Delligatti was one of the biggest franchisees of the McDonald's company.

To this day, the Big Mac is responsible for 20 percent of the corporation's overall sales. Today the Big Mac is sold in more than 100 countries around the world and has become the most popular sandwich on the planet. Delligatti called it "Aristocrat" and "Blue Ribbon Burger", but an advertising secretary thought "Big Mac" was pithy and catchy enough, and the third name stuck. He first created the Big Mac in 1967 at his Uniontown, Penn. restaurant, Business Insider reports. In 2007, to mark the burger's 40th anniversary, he opened a Big Mac Museum in North Huntingdon, about 20 miles southwest of Pittsburgh. Delligatti is survived by his wife, Ellie, two sons, five grandchildren and eight great-grandchildren.

The U.S. version of the Big Mac contains about 540 calories, 28 grams of fat and 25 grams of protein, according to the McDonald's website.

Now, almost 50 years after the first Big Mac went on sale, its creator Michael Dilligatti has died. "The bulb was already there". He also served in the Army in World War II.

While attending a restaurant trade show in Chicago in 1955, Delligatti became interested in the McDonald's booth.

"Jim was a legendary franchisee within McDonald's System who made a lasting impression on our Brand". During his life, he would own and operate 47 other McDonald's restaurants, making him one of the company's largest ever franchise holders.

He was one of the company's first franchisees, running stores in the United States in the 1950s.