Instead of being content playing games or visiting friends Hannah Robertson is showing that even a 9 year old girl can try to bring about a positive change in the world. After confronting a CEO of McDonald’s Hannah pointed out that healthy foods and healthy eating habits are good for everyone. She also stated that junk food consumption was being promoted and popularized by the giant fast food chain through the integration of toys and cartoon characters.
“Something I don’t think is fair is when big companies try to trick kids into eating food that isn’t good for them by using toys and cartoon characters,” 9-year-old Hannah Robertson told McDonald’s CEO Don Thompson. “If parents haven’t taught their kids about healthy eating then the kids probably believe that junk food is good for them because it might taste good.”
“It would be nice if you stopped trying to trick kids into wanting to eat your food all the time,” the younger Robertson told Thompson, reading from a prepared statement. “I make cooking videos with my mom that show kids that eating healthy can be fun and yummy. We teach them that eating a rainbow of fruits and veggies makes kids healthier, smarter and happier because that is the truth.”
“I make cooking videos with my mom that show kids that eating healthy can be fun and yummy. We teach them that eating a rainbow of fruits and veggies makes kids healthier, smarter and happier because that is the truth … Mr. Thompson, don’t you want kids to be healthy so they can live a long and happy life?”
While young Hannah had the coaching of her mother to help her get those points across at the stockholders’ meeting Don Thompson refused to be a silent CEO. Thompson appeared to scold the young girl as he insisted that “we don’t sell junk food.”
That statement alone was enough to get the attention of news media, journalists and bloggers around the world. The name “McDonald’s” is pretty much synonymous with a certain level of fast food and junk food. And it is true that many kids want to eat at these places specifically because of the french fries, pies, ice cream, milk shakes and burgers.
Although CEO Thompson stated that the franchise is now including some healthier food options on the menu this does not mean that there is no “junk food” being offered by McDonald’s.
“We don’t sell junk food,” Thompson said. “My kids also eat McDonald’s… We serve a lot of foods and veggies at McDonald’s and are trying to sell even more with the apples that we introduced into the Happy Meal.”
Just a few years ago these restaurants were confronted with a lawsuit that charged the owners and operators of engaging in deceptive business practices. One of the claims involved the toys that were being given away in kids’ meals.
“McDonald’s is the stranger in the playground handing out candy to children,” CSPI litigation director Stephen Gardner said in a press release. “McDonald’s use of toys undercuts parental authority and exploits young children’s developmental immaturity—all this to induce children to prefer foods that may harm their health. It’s a creepy and predatory practice that warrants an injunction.”
Another charge stated that the menu items contained an abundant amount of chemical preservatives, salt, fat and grease. It may have been more gracious and clever to allow Hannah a few minutes of publicity without trying to argue that junk/fast food is not “junk food”.
Check out the video of ‘We don’t sell junk food’ below.
Confronted by little girl, McDonald’s CEO insists: ‘We don’t sell junk food’
‘We Don’t Sell Junk Food,’ McDonald’s CEO Tells Blogger’s Kid