McDonald`s Happy Meals in legal hot soup

Last Updated: Wednesday, June 23, 2010 - 12:49

Washington: A Washington-based consumer advocacy group threatened to file a lawsuit against McDonald`s Wednesday, charging that the fast food chain `unfairly and deceptively` markets toys to children through its Happy Meals.

"McDonald`s marketing has the effect of conscripting America`s children into an unpaid drone army of word-of-mouth marketers, causing them to nag their parents to bring them to McDonald`s," Stephen Gardner of the Centre for Science in the Public Interest wrote to the heads of the chain in a letter announcing the lawsuit.
The centre, which has filed dozens of lawsuits against food companies in recent years, is hoping the publicity and the threat of a lawsuit will force McDonald`s to negotiate with them on the issue.

The group announced the lawsuit in the letter to McDonald`s 30 days before filing it with the hope that the company will agree to stop selling the toys before a suit is filed.

McDonald`s did not immediately respond to a request for comment on the lawsuit, which CSPI says would be filed in state court.
The centre has not settled on a state yet, but the group believes the toys in Happy Meals violate state consumer protection laws in Massachusetts, Texas, the Washington federal district, New Jersey and California.

Bureau Report

First Published: Wednesday, June 23, 2010 - 12:49

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