Over the past few years, the word “artisan” has appeared on a growing number of mass-produced items — McDonald's "artisan grilled chicken sandwich" being but one example.
There are no rules dictating proper use of the term. For some people, it has become so overused as to lose its meaning.
A couple years ago, the research firm Canadean surveyed consumers about what they think “artisan” means. The greatest share, nearly a quarter, said they didn’t know. Others associated it with authenticity and features like a unique taste, high-quality ingredients or being “handmade.”