Just back from Germany, Lotte Reimer said: ‘This multi-billion dollar fast-food business epitomises the appalling ethics and practices of multi-national companies in the food and agriculture sector. We have to stop swallowing both their lies and their pigswill. We must challenge them. We want good food from local farms, organic food, food that is fairly traded.’
McDonalds is extensively criticised over intellectual property rights, environmental destruction, animal rights and health issues, particularly childhood obesity. At the protest in Bad Doberan activists mimed eating plates of rotten food and rubbish to highlight these criticisms. Unfortunately, McDonalds called the police and around a dozen activists who did not have German passports were surrounded and held in the car-park by scores of riot police for more than six hours.
After five hours police gave in to activists’ pleas and supplied drinking water and allowed access to toilets. Though protesters had not been asked to leave McDonalds, they were charged with trespass and faced jail: presumed guilty until proven innocent. Finally, thanks to the legal team supporting anti-G8 protests, Danielle, Lotte, Kelvin and the others were released. They may, however, be called upon to return to Germany to stand trial.
As Lotte Reimer concluded: ‘We found no trace of happiness in McDonalds’ Happy Meal. Rather it left a very bitter taste in the mouth.’
For more information, contact Kelvin Mason, Tel: 01970 610 185 (home) 01970 622 610 (work).
Aberystwyth Peace & Justice Network is a coalition of town and university groups.