McDonald's at the forefront of sustainability in Taiwan's food industry | Taiwan News | 2022-08-28 11:10:00

2022-09-03 00:46:23 By : Ms. Maggie Lee

File photo: McDonald's location in Taiwan. File photo: McDonald's location in Taiwan. (CNA photo)

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — In recent years, McDonald’s Taiwan, as a major player in the local food industry, has shown leadership and commitment to lowering carbon emissions and pursuing sustainable development goals.

Recently, the fast food giant partnered with Business Today (今周刊) at the Act Now conference, held on Aug. 20 and Aug 21 to promote sustainable supply chains in Taiwan. McDonald’s Taiwan provided guests with special vouchers for their green menu options.

McDonald’s has operated in Taiwan for nearly 40 years. It now has more than 400 business locations and employs over 20,000 people across the country. As the awareness and concern over sustainability in the food industry has grown in recent decades, McDonald’s has been at the forefront of change and innovation, taking its corporate responsibilities seriously.

McDonald’s was the first major corporation in the Asia-Pacific region to receive full certification from the Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) in 2017 for its sustainable paper packaging sourced from responsibly managed forests.

Since 2018, McDonald’s has done away with the plastic caps for its popular McFlurry ice cream desserts. It also replaced the plastic spoons with wooden stirring utensils and began replacing plastic containers for salads and drink trays with paper products.All of these changes are estimated to have reduced the company’s total plastic waste by approximately 30 tons per year.

In 2019, the public’s attention turned to the overuse of plastic straws and their harmful impact on the environment. In response, and after much consideration, McDonald’s Taiwan took the bold step of doing away with straws altogether, urging the public to drink directly from the cup, and introducing new plastic cup tops to make the change as convenient as possible for customers.

Speaking at the Act Now conference, Senior Manager Liao Chiao-wei (廖喬偉) touted new measures taken during the pandemic to help reduce the use of disposable cups. McDonald’s has partnered with a Tainan-based startup called Good-To-Go (好盒器) to establish “rent and return” service stations for reusable cups; customers can use LINE to scan a QRCode to borrow cups from the stations. After they finish using the cup, they can return it to any station, where it will be cleaned and readied for the next customer to use.

Liao also noted that McDonald’s has put a lot of effort into simplifying the waste sorting and recycling process in its restaurant locations. This has greatly improved efficiency for customers and waste management personnel throughout Taiwan, according to the report. 

Speaking on McDonald’s corporate responsibility to work towards sustainable development, Liao was quoted saying “Good customer experiences are passed on through our front-line staff. We aim to be good neighbors to everyone. This means that we must share commitments and make these efforts for the entire society, the natural environment and for every citizen of the planet.”

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