If you were ever taken to McDonald’s for lunch as a child, you probably remember the excitement of getting one of their infamous Happy Meals. Everything about the Happy Meal appeals to children, from the design of the kid-friendly box, to the plastic toy inside. At times, kids may be even more excited about finding out what toy they’re going to get with their meal than the actual food itself. However, the burger giant is currently considering changing up their beloved Happy Meal. In the future, the kid friendly meal packages may no longer include the plastic toy, according to Today.
Have no fear, as McDonald’s doesn’t appear to be considering doing away with the toy in their kid’s meals altogether. However, they are planning to look into using recyclable toys as an alternative. The discussion regarding the plastic toys was brought up by two children, interestingly enough. Two sisters, 9-year-old Ella and 7-year-old Caitlin McEwan were learning about the value of protecting the environment at school. When they heard about the need to reduce the amount of plastic waste, they started a petition to encourage McDonald’s to stop giving out the plastic toys that come with their Happy Meals. McDonald’s has been giving out the toys for years and they are almost always plastic, packaged in even more plastic.
The McEwan’s sisters’ reasoning for encouraging McDonald’s to do away with the toys is that the entertainment most children get from these items is far outweighed by the detrimental effects such toys present to the environment. They made the point that the majority of the time, kids get only momentary enjoyment from the toys before getting bored and forgetting about them. Parents, not wanting even more junk laying around their house, often throw out the toys right away.
Over 330,000 people have already signed the petition involving the plastic toys. But it’s not just McDonald’s the McEwans are after, Burger King puts plastic toys in their kids’ meals as well.
Kids ask McDonalds to ditch plastic Happy Meal toys… pic.twitter.com/OKvpmxMpfz
— greenkontractor (@greenkontractor) July 13, 2019
“We like to go to eat at Burger King and McDonald’s, but children only play with the plastic toys they give us for a few minutes before they get thrown away and harm animals and pollute the sea,” the girls say in their petition.
McDonald’s heard the girls plea and responded.
“We have an active global working group exploring the production of more sustainable toy options,” a representative from McDonald’s stated.