Last year, two schoolgirls set up a petition to urge McDonald’s and Burger King to stop giving out plastic toys with children’s meals. Now, the activism of the two British girls is finally paying off as now both fast-food chains have pledged to remove plastic toys from their kids’ meals, with McDonald’s being the latest one.
The fast-food giant has recently announced that it will start phasing out plastic from its Happy Meals, in a bid to lessen its footprint on the environment. The company announced that from 2021, every kids’ meal in the UK will include either a soft toy, a paper-based toy or a book — a move that is expected to cut the chain’s plastic use by 3,000 metric tons.
Several measures are due to be put into place by McDonald’s so that the franchise can test its proposed sustainability initiatives. From this month, McDonald’s is going to trial paper packaging for Happy Meal toys, while starting August, the paper packaging will also be used to wrap books in Happy Meals. This is expected to help remove 200 tons of plastic from the business by 2021.
In two months’ time, the company also plans to carry out a five-week “toy amnesty” across the nation, asking for customers to return any unwanted plastic toys to restaurants. The toys will then be recycled to create play equipment for Ronald McDonald House Charities in the UK and Ireland.