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McDonalds urged to mark takeaway bags with car registration numbers

PUBLISHED: 11:23 24 December 2019 | UPDATED: 10:56 25 December 2019

McDonalds has said it will look into a suggestion by a Great Yarmouth borough councillor to mark takeaway bags with car registration numbers to prevent littering. Picture: Google Maps.

McDonalds has said it will look into a suggestion by a Great Yarmouth borough councillor to mark takeaway bags with car registration numbers to prevent littering. Picture: Google Maps.

Archant

A councillor has called for customers’ number plates to be printed on takeaway bags to stamp out littering along roads and in lay-bys.

Adrian Myers, member of Great Yarmouth Borough Council for Lothingland Ward, has written a letter to McDonalds urging the company to use technology to make drivers think twice about throwing packaging from their cars.

McDonalds has two outlets in Great Yarmouth, with the location at Gapton Hall also serving as a drive-through.

Mr Myers, who takes part in litter picks around the Belton area, said he has often found packaging from the restaurant strewn in the middle of the road or dumped by the roadside.

In the letter, sent in November to the company's head office, he writes: "McDonald's has an excellent record in managing its packaging in areas around its outlets.

Adrian Myers, Great Yarmouth borough councillor, has suggested McDonalds could use technology to deter customers from dumping takeaway bags. Picture: David HannantAdrian Myers, Great Yarmouth borough councillor, has suggested McDonalds could use technology to deter customers from dumping takeaway bags. Picture: David Hannant

"It is however when away from those outlets that members of the public feel free to discard such packaging as they see fit, often by throwing it from their vehicles or leaving it in lay-bys."

He said the idea would be easy to implement.

The company would use the CCTV technology already present at their drive-through outlets to send a customer's registration number to the cash desk where it would be printed on the bags and food containers.

"If then the driver or their passengers decided to discard their empty containers by throwing them out of the vehicle, it could be traced back to the said vehicle," Mr Myers said.

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"Knowing that this could be a possibility would I believe go a long way in deterring such behaviour as well as being an excellent public relations exercise." 

He said he would also contact Burger King with the same suggestion.

A spokesperson for McDonalds said: "This is something we as a business will look into as soon as possible.

"We will post a response directly back to Councillor Adrian Myers to address his concerns."

The estimated cost of dealing with illegally dumped waste in 2016/17 for Norfolk's councils was just over £1.1m.

In the first nine months of last year there were 6,600 recorded instances of fly-tipping in Norfolk, while throughout 2017/18, there were 15,305.


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