It’s been a while since we heard about that lawsuit against McDonald’s alleging that the fast food company exploits children by using toys and other kid-centric marketing techniques to get them to want Happy Meals. But earlier today, a judge in San Francisco dismissed the suit.
Looks like San Francisco isn’t the only place that has a problem with McDonald’s including free toys in its Happy Meals. The fast food giant has been fined approximately $1.8 million by a Brazilian agency that claims the freebies in McDonald’s kids’ meals promotes bad eating habits in children.
After a seemingly endless amount of debating, various votes, a mayoral veto and whatnot, the San Francisco that puts an end to the practice of including toys and other giveaway gimmicks in Happy Meals (and many other fast food kids’ meals with similar freebies) kicks in later this week. But the folks at McDonald’s have devised a clever plan to get those Shrek movie promo toys in your little ones’ hands — by simply charging for them.
With at least one lawsuit pending and some municipalities trying to ban Happy Meals and other fast food kids’ meals that offer some sort of prize or gift, McDonald’s has announced that it wants to healthy-up your kids’ food by making some menu tweaks, like automatically including apple slices in Happy Meals.
Consumerist reader Courtney is scratching her head at the bone-headed service she’s received at multiple McDonald’s when trying to buy her 3-year-old daughter a Happy Meal.
Last December, a California woman — along with the Center for Science in the Public Interest — filed a lawsuit against McDonald’s, alleging the fast food giant violates state laws by using toys to advertise Happy Meals directly to children. Yesterday, lawyers for the Golden Arches filed a motion to have the case dismissed because the company shouldn’t be held responsible for parents who can’t say no to their kids.
With so much attention being paid to San Francisco’s proposed law that would take the toys out of most kids meals, it’s easy to forget that the fast-food haters at the Center for Science In the Public Interest had given McDonald’s 30 days to remove toys from Happy Meals or face a lawsuit. That was back in June. Over 90 days ago. So what happened?
Yesterday, the proposed legislation that would remove toys from kids meals in San Francisco unless they met specific health requirement got one step closer to reality, as a board of supervisors committee recommended that the law go before the full board for a vote.
While the Center for Science in the Public Interest hasn’t yet made good on its threat to sue McDonald’s for continuing to put toys in their Happy Meals, the city of San Francisco is considering a law that could have your children asking “where’s my toy?” the next time you head to the Golden Arches and other fast food joints.
I’m having trouble telling whether the Campaign for a Commercial-Free Childhood is serious, or whether someone at the organization saw that Venture Brothers episode and got confused, so I’ll just describe what they’re doing and you can decide for yourselves. The group has launched a letter writing campaign to demand that McDonald’s stop giving out Marvel superhero toys, specifically The Thing and The Human Torch, because they’re too violent.
Perennial buzzkills at the Center for Science in the Public Interest have decided to set their sights on McDonald’s, issuing the fast food giant an ultimatum: Stop putting toys in their Happy Meals in the next 30 days or face a lawsuit.
If your kids pester you into purchasing McDonald’s Happy Meals, they could be severely disappointed the next time they visit Santa Clara County in California, where the county supervisors have voted to pass a law forbidding toys in Happy Meals and other fast food kids meals that don’t meet the county’s nutritional guidelines.
Have you ever wondered what a McDonald’s Happy Meal looks like after it’s sat on a shelf (not in a freezer) for a year? This seems like one of those things I would learn accidentally, but writer Nonna Joann Bruso decided to find out on purpose.
The results? Not as disgusting as you might think, which itself is sort of disgusting.