Fast food giant McDonald’s has announced that it will be axing plastic cutlery in favour of paper-based spoons, knives, and forks across England and Wales.
Starting on Tuesday, McDonald’s will begin rolling out the new cutlery made from pressed-paper that is fully recyclable and compostable, and is certified by the Forest Stewardship Council (FSC).
The fast-food giant said it hopes the move will eliminate 858 metric tonnes of plastic each year and follows a similar change to paper-based alternatives across restaurants in Scotland, Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland.
The move is part of the US-based firm’s sustainability strategy – ‘Plan for Change’ which includes a goal to achieve net zero emissions across its UK and Ireland business by 2040.
The strategy also seeks to make the business climate positive by 2050, meaning it will remove more greenhouse gas emissions than it creates.
Nina Prichard, head of sustainable and ethical sourcing at McDonald’s, said: “As a business, we’re committed to taking action on packaging and waste and increasing our use of sustainable materials.
“We’re pleased to announce another step forward in eliminating single-use plastics, and it’s great to be switching our famous McFlurry spoons to this new paper-based material.”
McDonald’s also set a target to ensure all its packaging is made from renewable, recycled or certified sources and is fully recyclable and compostable by 2024.
Looking at the wider fast-food industry, in 2021, Restaurant Brands International, the parent company of Burger King, Tim Hortons, and Popeyes brands, announced new commitments to help address climate change and said they would reach net-zero emissions by 2050.
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