McDonald’s Removes Fitness Trackers From Happy Meals Over Skin Irritation Concerns

Image courtesy of @iPadforCollege

Just days after McDonald’s began stuffing kid-friendly fitness trackers in its Happy Meal boxes, the fast food giant has removed the devices from the menu — not over claims of pointless “health washing,” but because some kids complained the trackers were causing skin irritation.

The Golden Arches tells CNN [warning: link has video that autoplays] that it removed the devices as the current Happy Meal toy after receiving “limited reports of potential skin irritations.”

“We have taken this swift and voluntary step after receiving limited reports of potential skin irritations that may be associated from wearing the band,” Terri Hickey, a spokeswoman for the chain, said in the statement. “Nothing is more important to us than the safety of our customers and we are fully investigating this issue.”

The company didn’t specify how many reports it received or if it would recall the trackers, as it did with 2.3 million Hello Kitty whistles after two children coughed up pieces.

McDonald’s recently began offering the “step-it” trackers in six colors for a limited-time in Happy Meals sold in the U.S. and Canada. The company said the devices were part of a promotional campaign aimed at getting kids on the move.

The trackers count steps and light up based on how quickly or slowly the wearer is moving.

An Arkansas woman notified McDonald’s last week that her four-year-old son appeared to have been left with a burn mark after wearing the device, CNN reports.

Screen Shot 2016-08-18 at 2.33.42 PM
After posting about the issue on Facebook, the woman says she received nearly a dozen messages from other parents who said their children experienced the same irritations.

Other parents have shared information about the irritations on McDonald’s Facebook page.

Screen Shot 2016-08-18 at 8.21.50 AM

Screen Shot 2016-08-18 at 8.35.58 AM Screen Shot 2016-08-18 at 8.35.45 AM Screen Shot 2016-08-18 at 8.35.29 AM

McDonald’s removes fitness tracker from Happy Meals [CNN]

Want more consumer news? Visit our parent organization, Consumer Reports, for the latest on scams, recalls, and other consumer issues.