McDonald’s used 99.6% sustainable sources for paper food packaging in 2020

By Amirtha P S, Desk Reporter
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The American fast-food company McDonald’s Corp has almost attained its goal of acquiring all of its paper food packaging in restaurants from the recycled or sustainable fiber.

In its annual sustainability report, the global burger chain stated that 99.6 percent of the paper bags, food wrappers, napkins, cup carriers and other fiber-based materials it used last year to pack meals for customers came from recycled or certified sources and those supported deforestation-free supply chains, up from 92 percent in 2019.

According to McDonald’s, over 80 percent of the guest packaging for its restaurants was made of fiber sources. The remaining 20 percent was made of plastic. It is also using paper straws and wooden cutlery in multiple markets and is exploring fiber lids and reusable cups.

Over the past years, many global restaurant chains have accelerated their efforts to cut down environmental harm from packaging, including using more recyclable or compostable materials and letting customers reuse cups or bowls.

In an Adweek-Harris Poll survey about single-use fast-food packaging, conducted among US adults, it was found that 62 percent of respondents said they would think more highly of a brand that switched to recyclable packaging, and 81 percent were concerned about litter and pollution from fast-food restaurants.

The global burger chain has set the goals to source all of its customer packagings from renewable, recycled, or certified sources, and further to recycle 100 percent of McDonald’s restaurants’ customer packaging, by 2025. As McDonald’s has more than 39,000 restaurants across the globe, small changes can ripple into other companies and industries.

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