Mcdonald's Ethical Issues

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From what we have read and interpreted from the case, the main issue is the ethical criticism of the fast food giant, McDonald, in Europe. By referring to the case, the organizational ethical issues which are filled around McDonald consist of food health, ill-treatment of animals, exploitation of children, and destruction of rainforests. Besides, anti-globalization, anti-American, anti-McDonald’s activism, and Europe governments had also been the concerns and ethical challenges for the fast food giant. First of all, we will touch the field of food health. In this situation, McDonald’s as the world’s leading fast food company has inevitably been first in the firing line. The problem in obesity and health eating has confronted the company. The company has criticized for providing unbalance menu and insufficient nutrition information about their food. Consequently, it actively encourages consumers, especially teenagers and children to make unhealthy choices. This can be seen by its promotion of ‘Supersize’ portions in their menus. The multinational company has also been claimed for its standard fare of its high calorie burgers and fries as the major factor of spiraling obesity rate among the consumers. In 2002, the fast-food chain was accused of misleading young consumers about the health of its products. This lawsuit was brought on behalf of two New York children with great publicity that brought harms to the company. Another critical issues of McDonald’s organisational ethics is the claim that the company’s ‘exploits children’ with its advertising. The company was blamed for misleading the children about their food with the use of attractive advertisements to encourage the youngsters to choose their food and hence causes health problems to them. Besides, the organization also responsible for being cruel to animals. This could be referred to the incident that McDonald partial responsibility on the destruction of South American rain forest. By causing their natural habitats to be gone, it was considered as one of the ill-treatments to the animals. Low wages to the employees, ‘strongly antipathetic’ to unions, and especially the risks of the health of regular and long-term workers have also concerned the company along this time. In addition, these incidents had brought great damages to McDonald as it had attracted massive international publicity and media coverage as a wealth of information that critical to the company’s reputation are available through TV programme, documentary film, media articles, books and also a website known as ‘McSpotlight’. Moreover, the big-Mac was ‘under attack’. McDonald’s was at a crisis in 2002 as the company posted its first ever quarterly loss. Its share price was at a lowest by 2003. And the profits for McDonald’s in UK plummeted by 70 percent. This showed the circumstances from the unethical deeds by the fast-food giant. Such incidents can be taken as one of the major problems face by the world-leading fast food restaurant. The company has been performed well in the international market. Somehow, its accusations on the organisational ethics had caused the company to encounter such crisis in their business. This is rather a bad impact to McDonald’s either in its strategic planning or its managerial board management and decision making. Furthermore, the company might found it easy to enter the market of United States but it was another story in Europe. Europe is not so positive about the corporation’s approach and had protested it for the past few decades. As the fast-food giant enters the market of Europe, the anti-McDonald’s activists had also grown rapidly in the foundation of the fast food restaurant. One of the examples which can best explain such sayings is the story of Bove, a French sheep farmer and union leader. This ‘McHero’ became a folk hero as he held a campaign to defend small, local producers to stop the intrusion of the American multinational company. Another issue...
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