McDonald’s Voluntary Product Recall Gets Thumbs Up from Toxics Watch Group

EcoWaste Coalition, a non-profit
watch group tracking toxic chemicals in products and wastes, lauded fast food
giant McDonald’s Philippines for voluntarily recalling promotional back packs,
sling bags and bag tags that contain lead, a hazardous substance.
The voluntary recall will
be conducted starting today August 26 until October 24, 2016 by suppliers MZM
Souvenirs and F Colors with McDonald’s full support and cooperation as
announced by Golden Arches Development Corp., the master franchise holder of
McDonald’s restaurants in the Philippines.  
The recall was the outcome
of the EcoWaste Coalition’s chemical investigation showing lead in the
accessible substrate material of the black back pack as it reported to
McDonald’s Philippines and US last August 8.
Upon receipt of the
group’s notification, McDonald’s immediately contacted the bag supplier, MZM
Souvenirs, to halt production while also stopping the distribution of the said
bags as giveaway items.
The group’s investigation
also prompted the company to test other promotional products resulting to the
subsequent expansion of the recall to include McDonald’s red sling bags and red
bag tags supplied by F Colors. These items are no longer available in
McDonald’s stores.
“McDonald’s made the right
decision to promptly retrieve the lead-containing bags and tags as this is
necessary for children’s health and well-being. 
We commend them for the measures undertaken to notify the public and
ensure the rapid retrieval of the recalled products for environmentally-sound
disposal without incineration,” said Aileen Lucero, National Coordinator,
EcoWaste Coalition.
Margot Torres, Deputy
Managing Director of McDonald’s Philippines, has thanked EcoWaste Coalition for
approaching the company with its concerns. ”Nothing matters more to us than the
safety of our customers. We have reinforced to our local supplier partners that
there must be absolute adherence to the high standards of safety that we uphold
at McDonald’s,” Torres said. “These recalled items have not met that standard.”
“We apologize for any
inconvenience caused, and we strongly encourage our customers to immediately
return the bags and bag tag, so we can have them replaced or refunded,” Torres
As per McDonald’s advisory,
customers may opt to receive a new bag of a different material or ask for a
refund upon return of the bags.  As for
the bag tag, customers will receive a refund. 
As a gesture of goodwill, all customers who return any of the bags
and/or the bag tag will also receive a free food item and a birthday party
discount coupon.
The EcoWaste Coalition had
earlier alerted McDonald’s that the black back packs failed the maximum lead
limit of 100 parts per million (ppm) for lead in accessible substrate materials
as established by the US Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act.
Department of Environment
and Natural Resources Administrative Order 2013-24 (also known as the “Chemical
Control Order for Lead and Lead Compounds) also prohibits the use of lead in
the production of toys and school supplies, among other things.
Last August 19, the
EcoWaste Coalition and McDonald’s had a constructive meeting to discuss the
group’s concerns and the recall strategy for the affected items.
For more information about
lead, please see: