McDonald's is to introduce a mammoth burger called 'Le 280 Grammes'(twice the size of a Big Mac) in its latest attempt to bring back French customers to its chain of fastfood restaurants.

McDonald's' new initiative is part of a counterintuitive strategy to rehabilitate the hamburger in France. The French Unit of McDonald's has suffered particularly from bad press around its corporate image in France and the BSE crisis in the last year, driving down sales in most of its outlets.

Last month, the fastfood chain invited customers to open days in its restaurants and meatpacking facilities to explain to customers the mechanics behind making the Big Mac. The message that McDonald's wants to get across is that it only uses prime cuts of meat not prone to disease risk in its burgers.

To raise the public's awareness of these facts, McDonald's is relying on an ad campaign that tells consumers that McDonald's burgers contain 'no offal, no brain, no spinal cord and no lymph nodes.

The company is hoping to introduce local versions of its French strategy in Germany, Spain and Italy, in an effort to create demand in markets which have fallen by as much as 50%.