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08/01/02 . Adam Fresco . The Times . UK
Fast Food is Sticky Death for Hedgehog
McDonald's was criticised yesterday for refusing to change the design of ice-cream cartons to protect hedgehogs who have been found trapped and dying inside them.
The animals are attracted by the sweet smell from discarded cartons but once they have put their heads inside the dome-shaped lids they cannot get back out again because of the "spill-guard" on the McFlurry containers.
McDonald's said that it would hold talks with the manufacturers about changing the packaging more than a year ago, but has now made it clear it will not be changing the design.
Anne Jenkins, for the British Hedgehog Preservation Society, said "Hedgehogs have been found across the country, dead or dying with their heads trapped in these containers". An RSPCA spokeswoman added "We are concerned and extremely disappointed that McDonald's has not done anything to change the design of the McFlurry".
In a letter to the BHPS, Kim Moffatt, a McDonald's customer services manager, said "At present we have no plans to change the lid. The individuals who carelessly discard McDonald's litter are extremely thoughtless and I am sorry for the detrimental effect this is having."
A McDonald's spokesman added "We'd ask people to remember that if they put the cartons in the bin there would not be a problem."