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Bread fan: Panera changes menu to get healthier but do consumers really care?

Fast food customers largely laud Panera Bread for plenty of reasons but none more prevalent than its perfectly crafted menu that promotes healthier options than its burger and fries companions in the marketplace.
As much as Panera is appreciated for its salads, soups, sandwiches and other menu items of a healthier ilk, the food chain has upped its ante and decided its time to eliminate even more ingredients and food additives from its menu selections.
This move is part of a growing trend of other restaurants and food entities to start tossing aside the bad as it relates to the makeup of various products being offered. Say goodbye to artificial everything, and in its place is going to be a more natural way of prepping, serving and delivering food to a consumer base that is hungry for change as it relates to adopting better eating habits amid concerns of not only additives but as the GMO craze that has swept any and all discussions regarding what we're eating.
Panera has started testing various items for its sweeping menu changes, but they're hardly alone in this battle. The aforementioned burger and fries outfits have started to take note of this, namely McDonald's. The struggling, iconic fast food restaurant is dropping menus left and right and have started to reconsider a lot of its image. Part of its reconstruction to rebuild its revenue includes getting rid of ingredients and additives as well. That's not to suggest that McDonald's is going to all of a sudden mirror Panera as far as selections go, but they'll undoubtedly roll out a public relations piece that shows they're thinking about the health and well being of the consumer.
The question remains, however, is whether or not all these changes are actually going to matter much in the grand scheme of food and eating. Yes, GMO talk runs rampant, along with chatter about artificial sweeteners and how bad they are for you for a number of reasons, but the reality is the obesity epidemic suggests that not that many people care about what's in their foods. The GMO craze and others like it come across as more banter you'd hear on 20/20 or "The View" and really isn't quite as important as you'd assume if you look at results versus rhetoric.

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What Panera, McDonald's and others like them are doing is admirable, but right now until you see something that reflects what is happening in a positive light, it's just an exercise in futility and good will that is going to fill a void of the minority but not yet the masses.

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