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This Just In ...

Kevin Fischer is a veteran broadcaster, the recipient of over 150 major journalism awards from the Milwaukee Press Club, the Wisconsin Associated Press, the Northwest Broadcast News Association, the Wisconsin Bar Association, and others. He has been seen and heard on Milwaukee TV and radio stations for over three decades. A longtime aide to state Senate Republicans in the Wisconsin Legislature, Kevin can be seen offering his views on the news on the public affairs program, "InterCHANGE," on Milwaukee Public Television Channel 10, and heard filling in on Newstalk 1130 WISN. He lives with his wife, Jennifer, and their lovely young daughter, Kyla Audrey, in Franklin.

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Previously on This Just In…

If you’ve been at a McDonald’s after 10:30 or within a few minutes when breakfast hours end, you might be able to snarf what limited choices have been sitting under a heat lamp. But you’re pretty much out of luck.

Morning breakfast items represent a $50 billion dollar market, so it’s no surprise competition is fierce. Taco Bell recently jumped into the market with a waffle taco, promoting with an ingenious ad featuring numerous guys actually named Ronald McDonald. Starbucks is bringing back some of its old breakfast favorites.

These are smart moves. According to Abbey Klaassen, editor of Advertising Age, breakfast is one of the only growth areas for fast food companies. Breakfast constitutes 21 percent of all restaurant visits.

The Port Washington, N.Y.-based research firm, The NPD Group reports that during 2013, US consumers increased their visits at the morning meal by 3 percent. However, traffic declined 1 percent last year for both the lunch and dinner dayparts, which both have greater overall shares of total restaurant visits. While morning meals account for 21 percent of all visits, lunch and dinner account for 34 percent and 31 percent, respectively.

“Breakfast continues to be a bright spot for the restaurant industry, as evidenced by the number of chains expanding their breakfast offerings and times,” Bonnie Riggs, the company’s restaurant industry analyst, said in a statement. “A restaurant morning meal serves a variety of needs. In addition to helping us jump-start our day, it satisfies the need for convenience, is less costly than other restaurant meals and is readily available to us.”

And mornings are only going to get more lucrative. NPD predicts more growth in guest counts at the morning meal with a 7-percent increase over the next nine years, with quick-service brands’ morning traffic expected to grow 9 percent over that time.

Is it any wonder McDonald’s is considering extending breakfast hours, even throughout the day? For now, it seems the 10:30 a.m. cutoff is a loser.

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