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When having “it your way”, it’s handy to know your fractions!


Did you know that the average consumer’s poor knowledge and understanding of fractions caused A&W to lose out in the burger wars – even though it offered a bigger and better-tasting product for the same price?

By the same token, being bad at maths caused the consumer to miss out as well.


Why knowing fractions is important. So how did it all go down?

In the 1980s, A&W tried to outdo the ubiquitous McDonalds Quarter Pounder by introducing a third-pound burger. (Yes, the name didn’t really help.) Not only was it bigger than the favoured quarter pounder, it was proven to be tastier in blind taste tests as well.

Yet people weren’t buying.

This completely baffled A&W and they set out to do more focus groups to find out why.

Turns out that more than half of those surveyed thought that a third of a pound was smaller than a quarter of a pound and why would they pay the same price for something smaller?!

Their reasoning? Three is less than four. Oh dear.

McDonalds have since tried to introduce the third pounder several times but it has always fallen flat. The jury is out as to whether it’s still a poor understanding of fractions that is to blame or whether the name third pounder simply doesn’t sound that appetising.

Matrix Math makes learning fraction fun and interesting.

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