MCDONALD’S Monopoly game could be under threat after an MP branded it a “health hazard” and called for the campaign to be banned.
Labour MP Tom Watson claims the annual competition, which gives customers the chance to win prizes including food and cash, encourages over-eating.
McDonald’s The annual giveaway usually starts in March
He blasted the fast food giant’s promotion as a “grotesque marketing ploy” and a “danger to public health.”
Mr Watson reportedly wrote to McDonald’s UK asking for the competition, due to start on Wednesday, to be cancelled.
The shadow culture, media and sport secretary, posted on Twitter: “It is unacceptable that this campaign aims to manipulate families into ordering junk food more frequently and in bigger portions, in the faint hope of winning a holiday, a car, or a cash prize many would otherwise struggle to afford”.
He’s written to Paul Pomroy, chief executive of McDonald’s UK, to cancel the marketing campaign, according to the Observer.
In the letter, he said: “It is appalling that your company’s Monopoly marketing ploy encourages people to eat more unhealthy foods by offering sugar-filled desserts as rewards.
“It is unacceptable that this campaign aims to manipulate families into ordering junk food more frequently and in bigger portions, in the faint hope of winning a holiday, a car, or a cash prize many would otherwise struggle to afford.
It is unacceptable that this campaign aims to manipulate families into ordering junk food more frequently and in bigger portions, in the faint hope of winning a holiday, a car, or a cash prize many would otherwise struggle to affordTom Watsonwriting in letter to McDonald’s boss
“I am requesting that you urgently rethink this strategy: McDonald’s must stop playing on people’s hopes and prioritising profit over public health. I urge you to cancel this marketing campaign.”
The politician himself tackled type 2 diabetes by adopting a healthier lifestyle and losing seven stone.
McDonald’s has argued that people can take part by buying some its healthier options and no longer need to buy the bigger items on the menu.
A spokesperson for the chain said: “This year’s campaign sees customers receive prize labels on carrot bags, salads and our Big Flavour Wraps range, and we have removed the incentive to ‘go large’.
“Nutrition information is clearly displayed and we continue to review, refine and reformulate our menu to reduce saturated fat, salt and sugar.”JUNK FOOD AD BAN
It comes as the government considers banning junk food adverts on TV before 9pm to fight the “epidemic” of childhood obesity.
Plans for the new watershed have been put out for public consultation in a bid to combat the growing crisis, the Department of Health and Social Care (DHSC) said.
One in three children leaves primary school overweight or obese and the number of children classed as seriously obese is at a record high, it added.
If we don’t find effective ways to improve our kids’ health, UK children will live shorter lives than their parentsJamie Oliver
Campaigners, doctors and politicians welcomed the announcement about the proposed advertising ban.
TV chef Jamie Oliver said: “If we don’t find effective ways to improve our kids’ health, UK children will live shorter lives than their parents.
“It’s a fact that kids are hugely influenced by junk food ads – so the media and the food industry has a real opportunity here to do something about it.”
LIFE-SAVING OP Baby girl born with her parasitic twin’s HEAD attached to her tummy undergoes surgery to remove it PASSION PEAKS This is the age when your sex drive will be at its most rampant (and girls, it might surprise you) Sex Secrets Prostitute who earns £2,000 a week reveals the average penis size … and how much she enjoys work Bath Bomb This is the gross reason you should NEVER use a mesh shower pouf ‘PREGNANCY’S MADE IT WORSE’ Mum dubbed ‘spotty b***h’ is battling rare condition that causes hundreds of bubble-like tumours to cover her body Graphic WarningTHE ‘CURSED’ CHILD A MUM WON’T LOVE Heartbreaking photos show the premature baby whose mum won’t hold or feed her
Adverts for foods high in fat, sugar and salt will be consulted on, with the proposed pre-9pm ban affecting TV programmes, online streaming sites and social media companies, the DHSC said.
Junk food adverts during children’s TV shows have been banned since 2007 but research by broadcasting regulator Ofcom claimed youngsters spend 64 per cent of their TV viewing time watching shows not aimed specifically at them.
Public Health Minister Steve Brine said: “The NHS is already preparing to treat more and more children for the serious effects of extreme obesity in the future, so we have a duty to address the underlying causes because we believe passionately in our NHS.”
PA:Press Association Labour MP Tom Watson has called for McDonald’s to ban its Monopoly competition
McDonald’s The annual competition, due to start this week, sees McDonald’s give away millions of lucrative prizes, ranging from free food to cars
How to get the freshest fries at McDonald’s
We pay for your stories! Do you have a story for The Sun Online news team? Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 0207 782 4368 . You can WhatsApp us on 07810 791 502. We pay for videos too. Click here to upload yours.