A mother has called for McDonald’s to ban Happy Meal toys after sharing images of a rubbish bin overflowing with plastic waste and packaging at one of the most iconic tourist spots in Sydney.
“Found all these in the bin at Darling Harbour,” the upset mum posted on a mothers’ Facebook group on Thursday, along with several photos of a bin overflowing with the fast food chain’s packaging and several happy meal toys, some still unopened.
“This is so distressing to me, there were even more in other bins.”
The mum questioned why parents would purchase Happy Meals that come with a toy if children lost interest in them so quickly.
“Why are people buying happy meals for a toy their kids play with for less than a few minutes?” she asked.
“This is a disgrace. All of this plastic will end up in landfill or our oceans,” she wrote.
The annoyed mother then ended the post with the hashtag, “ban the Happy Meal toy”.
Facebook users responded to the images with mixed opinions.
“No need to ban, just give customers an option,” one person suggested.
“Most of the toys are a five-minute wonder and they end up in the bin so yes it’s incredibly wasteful. However my son and I played the mini Trouble game he got and it was fun,” one mother said of the Hasbro Gaming promotion.
Some people agreed with the original post and were just as “disgusted” by the plastic waste.
“That’s so sad and disgusting. The toys are literally just junk. Totally useless and all this packaging is a joke,” a person responded.
“While we're trying to campaign Maccas banning plastic toys, we need to campaign Woolworths and Coles creating stupid plastic collectible junk too,” another added.
The mother ended the post pleading with people to share the image and hashtag to spread awareness about the issue.
McDonald’s Australia told Yahoo News Australia they were considering alternatives to their plastic toys.
“McDonald’s currently includes toys with our Happy Meals in Australia and continues to consider alternative options to plastic toys, including books and paper-based toys,” a spokesperson said.
The fast food chain is also looking at ways to improve packaging.
“Examples of packaging improvements we’ve made to improve our sustainability include removing the plastic lids from our McFlurry Cups, moving to fibre-based salad bowls and offering takeaway bags made from 100% recycled material,” the spokesperson said.
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