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article imageMcDonalds to reduce pesticide use in potatoes

By Bob Ewing     Apr 1, 2009 in Food
McDonald's has agreed to take steps towards reducing pesticide use in its domestic potato supply. Shareholders withdraw a proposal.
After McDonalds made the announcement, the Bard College Endowment, Newground Social Investment and the AFL-CIO Reserve Fund withdrew a shareholder proposal that, if approved, would have required the company to publish a report on options for reducing pesticide use in its supply chain.
Apparently, McDonald's has agreed to survey its U.S. potato suppliers, compile a list of best practices in pesticide reduction and recommend those best practices to its global suppliers. It also will share its findings with investors and include the findings in its annual corporate social responsibility report.
"Because McDonald's has such a commanding presence in the marketplace, this commitment offers the promise of significant reductions of pesticide use—which will benefit consumer health, as well as farm workers, local agricultural communities, and the environment," said Newground Social Investment Chief Executive Bruce Herbert, who is also a member of the Board of Directors of the Institute for Children's Environmental Health.
If this agreement not been reached, then the resolution would have appeared in the company's upcoming proxy statement and come up for a vote at the company's shareholder meeting later this year.
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