The controversy over whether or not McDonald's should be banned from including kids' toys in their highly popular Happy Meals just got a little more controversial when McDonald's announced plans to introduce meat toys in the meals come January to replace the cheap plastic ones presently being used.
A company spokesperson claims this is the only way they can continue to keep the Happy Meal one of their top sellers while abiding by the wishes of the majority of the people who believe the plastic toys somehow can be linked to childhood obesity.
"We had several options," explained Martin Warnersmithy, head of product development at McDonald's. "We could take the plastic toys out and risk not selling another Happy Meal, or we could substitute something for the toy which may actually be more valuable to the child than a mere trinket. That's when we came up with various meat toy designs. We see it as a win-win."
While McDonald's will not admit that there is a link between a child wanting a cheap plastic toy and by doing so will eat whatever is put in front of him and possibly adding to any weight problems, they do admit that the toys are a draw. In addition, they claim that not one person has actually brought up the fact that a Happy Meal, sans toys, could be considered just as unhealthy as one with toys.
"The meat toys will be a novelty just like the plastic ones," said Warnersmithy. "We will have little characters from such movies as Shrek and Ice Age that will be pre-shaped using moldable beef and chicken products. If kept wrapped in the plastic wrappers and preserved as keepsakes, we believe these new toys will be just as popular."
Asked what if the kids want to play with the food instead of saving it? Warnersmithy replied, "that's the beauty of it; they can."