Staff from McDonald’s restaurant in the Abbeycentre have teamed up with the local community to clean up unsightly litter blighting Hazelbank Park.
The initiative was held in support of the ‘Keep Northern Ireland Beautiful Big Spring Clean Campaign.’
The McDonald’s team of six volunteers collected six bags of rubbish over a two-hour period. Amongst the rubbish collected, which included metal food tins and plastic bottles, staff also came across the base of a discarded traffic cone which had been left along the shores of Belfast Lough at Whiteabbey.
Local McDonald’s franchisee Des Lamph commented: “The Big Spring Clean Campaign is an effective way of making a positive difference to a particular area, and in previous years it has been inspiring to see members of the community join forces to take action on litter that damages our environment. At McDonald’s we believe it is important for everyone to help protect and preserve the environment for future generations, and we’re committed to finding ways to reduce, reuse and recycle in our restaurants and across our business.
“I’d like to thank my staff and all the volunteers for their hard work and setting a good example of what can be achieved if people pull together. It’s vital that we all do our bit to tackle the issue - everyone from businesses like mine to the residents should make a commitment to helping protect the local environment.”
McDonald’s has supported the Big Spring Clean Campaign since 2010. During the 2013 initiative, McDonald’s staff across Northern Ireland took part in 26 events, collecting over two tonnes of discarded waste by cleaning rivers, forests, beaches and housing estates. As well as the larger-scale Big Spring Clean events, staff at every McDonald’s restaurant also patrol the streets regularly to collect all litter that has been discarded, regardless of its origin.
McDonald’s was the first UK restaurant to introduce ‘Litter Patrols’ in the UK in 1982. Employees undertake three litter patrols every day, collecting litter in and around restaurants.
As well as this, McDonald’s aims to reduce all restaurant waste and increase the amount that can be recycled. Cardboard is collected from 90 per cent of restaurants for recycling, removing around 10,000 tonnes of cardboard per year from landfill.