Fast food giant KFC has vowed to fight the litter scourge as it recognizes it plays an important role in stopping takeout waste.
The chicken chain has been criticized over KFC-branded waste, something the boss said is “disturbing”.
But now it has promised to make amends, starting with backing the Great British Spring Clean – as staff from all of its 600 UK restaurants were dispatched yesterday to clean up their areas.
Paula MacKenzie, director of the company in the UK and Ireland, said: ‘I can say this as the MD of KFC, there is nothing more disturbing than when you are walking or driving somewhere and you see a piece of your own brand that you cares very, very much – sometimes nowhere near a KFC restaurant – and you think “how did that get there?”.
‘Litter has always been an important topic. If you run a takeaway brand, one of the biggest challenges you want to tackle there is litter.’
Fast food giant KFC has vowed to fight the litter scourge, starting by backing the Great British Spring Clean campaign
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When the UK came out of lockdown in May last year, disturbing images showed fast food waste scattered across the country’s parks and beaches.
A photo of a discarded box depicting the face of KFC’s flagship Colonel Sanders in Beccles, Suffolk, went viral, attracting more than 40,000 comments and 6,000 comments online after wildlife photographer Harry Read posted it.
The fast food giant responded with posters urging its customers not to be “throwers.”
With the country back out of lockdown, KFC said it will introduce a dedicated email address – firstname.lastname@example.org – for customers to report complaints about litter around restaurants.
It will also train 28,000 workers on the damage that litter can cause and will work with councils across England to determine what infrastructure they have to solve waste problems.
This is in addition to the three garbage cleanups KFC employees do in restaurants every day.
Conservative MP Rebecca Pow cleans up trash as part of Great British Spring Clean in her Taunton constituency
The sites participating yesterday included those in Penrith, Cumbria; Buckshaw Village, Lancashire; Newton Aycliffe, County Durham; Beckton, East London; Handsworth, Sheffield and in Taunton, where Environment Minister Rebecca Pow helped.
Ms MacKenzie said: ‘We all have a responsibility and the bigger your company, the more responsibility you have.
“We have a big responsibility as KFC, but I think we all have a responsibility as members of the public to make our country and the place where we live look the best we can, I feel passionate about that.”
She added that she and her sons, ages eight and ten, would be cleaning up litter the next time they were on vacation.
Ms MacKenzie said that while some municipalities struggled with bureaucracy, private companies have an important role to play in tackling litter.
154,658 garbage collectors have pledged to clean 981,119 miles of Britain’s streets, beaches and countryside so far [Stock image]
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She said, “I remember talking to councilors who said, ‘It’s almost impossible for us as a council to even sign off a bin – to get the money, to get the budget – to get a bin. to sign off.” So we just have such a role to play.’
Yesterday, 154,658 volunteers had pledged to clean 981,119 miles from the UK, bringing the Great British Spring Clean – organized by Keep Britain Tidy and supported by the Daily Mail – within touching distance of its million-mile goal by June 13.
For more info go to gbspringclean.org