From LDA of America’s Healthy Children Project Director, Tracy Gregoire
LDA of Texas partnered with LDA of America, the Mind the Store campaign, and organizational partners across the US to push McDonald’s to get rid of PFAS chemicals in their food packaging, and this month McDonald’s agreed. This is a big win!
Per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) chemicals are used to make materials grease and water-resistant. These chemicals are also harmful to our health and are nicknamed “forever chemicals” because they do not break down. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention states that: “Some studies have shown that PFAS exposure may affect growth, learning, and the behavior of infants and older children….and increase the risk of cancer.” These risks are not acceptable.
That’s why LDA of Texas joined LDA of America’s on this letter asking McDonalds to ban toxic PFAS in November 2020, urging McDonald’s. LDA of Texas also participated in a national day of action.
On January 13th 2021, McDonald’s announced they will ban all PFAS from guest packaging materials by 2025. The company stated: “We’re proud to take another step in our product stewardship journey with our commitment to remove all added fluorinated compounds from our guest packaging materials globally by 2025.” The company has also eliminated BPA, BPS, and phthalates in its packaging. (Note: while the company had stopped using long-chain PFAS chemicals in 2008, they continued to use other PFAS chemicals.)
McDonald’s is joining other quick-service companies like Cava, Chipotle, Freshii, Panera Bread, Sweetgreen, and Taco Bell who have also announced action to get rid of PFAS chemicals in food packaging.