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    Happy Meal Hello Kitty Whistle Recall – Nov. 10, 2014

    Nothing is more important to us than the safety of our customers and this includes the toys we offer them. McDonald’s has decided to voluntarily recall a red whistle included with the Happy Meal Hello Kitty Birthday Lollipop Toy (#6) in the U.S. and Canada after recently discovering that components of the whistle can detach, posing a choking and aspiration hazard to young children.

    McDonald’s has received two reports of  children who coughed out pieces of the whistle. We have expressed our sincere apologies to them.

    We are asking customers who have the toy to immediately take the whistle away from children and return it to their local McDonald’s restaurant. The whistle can be removed from the figurine. We’re happy to substitute this toy for another, and, in addition, we are offering the choice of either a yogurt tube or bag of apple slices.

    No other designs in the current Hello Kitty and Max Steel promotions are involved in this voluntary recall, nor are toys affected from previous Hello Kitty promotions. Additionally, this recall has no impact on other Happy Meal products and programs distributed in other markets outside the U.S. and Canada.

    Approximately 2.5 million whistles were manufactured.  Because of the duration of the promotion, the vast majority were not sent to restaurants.  Of the amount produced, to date we have recovered approximately 70% or 1.6 million of the whistles. We are committed to recovering the red whistles that were distributed to our restaurants and our customers.

    We are working cooperatively with  the U.S. Consumer Products Safety Commission (CPSC) and Health Canada on this voluntary recall.

    This Media / Customer Q&A involves the whistle inside the Hello Kitty Birthday Lollipop promotional item, which was distributed to McDonald’s restaurants in the U.S. and Canada. The Hello Kitty Birthday Lollipop was number 6 in a series of Hello Kitty toys scheduled to be distributed on a rolling basis between October 31, 2014 and November 25, 2014 as part of the Hello Kitty 40th Anniversary Promotion.


    Q1 What product is being recalled?
    A1 The recalled product is the red whistle that was included in a plastic Hello Kitty figurine holding a pink heart-shaped lollipop. The whistle can be removed from the figurine.  A picture can be found above.
       
    Q2 Why is McDonald’s doing this voluntary recall?
    A2 McDonald’s is committed to helping ensure the safety and well-being of our customers and this includes the safety of the toys we offer them.  We have initiated a voluntary recall because components of the red whistle can detach, posing a choking and aspiration hazard to young children.
       
    Q3 Do customers need to return both the Hello Kitty figurine and whistle?
    A3 No, customers should only return the red whistle included in the Hello Kitty figurine. The whistle can be removed from the figurine.
       
    Q4 Is the Hello Kitty figurine safe for customers to keep?
    A4 Please know that the Hello Kitty figurine is safe for customers to keep. However, consumers should immediately take the red whistle away from children and return the whistle  to a McDonald’s restaurant.
       
    Q5 Does this recall affect the other toy designs in the current Happy Meal promotion or previous Hello Kitty promotions?
    A5 We’d like to reassure you that the recall only involves the red whistle contained within the Hello Kitty Birthday Lollipop toy.  No other toy designs in the current Hello Kitty and Max Steel promotions are involved in this recall, nor are toys affected from previous Hello Kitty promotions.
       
    Q6 Are the other toy designs in the current Happy Meal promotion safe?
    A6 Yes, they are safe.  We would like you to know that nothing is more important to us than the safety of our customers and this includes the toys we offer them.
       
    Q7 Didn’t McDonald’s test the toy?  
    A7 Yes, we certainly did.  McDonald’s safety standards are among the highest in the industry, and we have a strong track record of toy safety. The toy was evaluated by an independent third-party laboratory, accredited by the U.S. Consumer Products Safety Commission (CPSC), and the toy was determined to be in compliance with all applicable federal and state requirements.
       
    Q8 Does this recall affect other whistles distributed by McDonald’s?
    A8 No, we’d like you to know that previously distributed McDonald’s whistles are not involved in this recall and are safe.
       
    Q9 Why are your past whistles not included in this recall?
    A9 We recognize that you have may have a concern over whistles that McDonald’s has distributed in the past.  Those whistles were designed differently and please be assured that they are safe.  They are not part of this recall.
       
    Q10 Have there been any reports of incidents or injury? 
    A10 McDonald’s received two reports that children coughed out pieces of the whistle that had released into their mouths.  We expressed our sincere apologies to the children and families that were affected.
       
    Q11 How many toys are involved in the recall?
    A11 Approximately 2.5 million whistles were manufactured.  Because of the duration of the promotion, the vast majority were not sent to restaurants.    Of the amount produced, to-date we have recovered approximately 70% or 1.6 million of the whistles. We are notifying consumers to recover the red whistles that were distributed to our customers.
       
    Q12 When was the toy offered in your restaurants?
    A12 The Hello Kitty promotion was offered at McDonald’s U.S. and Canada restaurants beginning October 31, 2014.  
       
    Q13 Was the toy produced in China and by whom?
    A13 Yes, the toy was produced in China by a long-standing supplier who has consistently met our high safety standards. 
       
    Q14 How many other recalls has McDonald’s had and what were they for?
    A14 We strive to always produce safe and high quality products.  McDonald’s safety standards are among the highest in the industry and we have a strong track record of toy safety.  Given the billions of promotional items we’ve sold and distributed over the years, recalls represent a very small percentage.
     
    Further information is available on the CPSC’s Web site at www.cpsc.gov.
       
    Q15 What should customers do with the toy?
    A15 Customers should immediately take the whistle away from children and return it to any McDonald’s restaurant to receive a replacement Happy Meal toy and the choice of either a free yogurt tube or a free bag of sliced apples.
       
    Q16 How can customers return their toy?
    A16 We recognize the inconvenience of returning a toy.  To ease the return process, any McDonald’s restaurant will accept the toy.  We encourage our customers to review the full set of instructions related to returning the toy by visiting www.mcdonalds.com beginning Monday, November 10. Customers can also call McDonald’s toll-free number at 1-800-244-6227.  
       
    Q17 What will customers receive if they participate in the voluntary recall?
    A17 We would like all of our customers who received the red whistle to know that we apologize for any inconvenience that this issue may have caused, and we would like to make their experience a happy one.  To that end, customers can return the toy at any McDonald’s restaurant and receive a replacement Happy Meal toy and the choice of either a free yogurt tube or a free bag of sliced apples.
       
    Q18 Was the toy distributed anywhere besides the U.S.?
    A18 Yes, McDonald’s Canada and some markets in the Caribbean also distributed the toy in their restaurants.  Identical, immediate and swift action was taken in these markets as part of this voluntary recall.  
       
    Q19 Is McDonald’s Canada recalling the toy? 
    A19 Yes, this promotion includes Canada and the recall is underway there as well.
       
    Q20 How does this recall impact Happy Meal products and programs distributed in other markets outside the U.S. and Canada?
    A20 We would like you to know that this recall has no impact on past or present Happy Meal products and programs distributed in other markets outside the U.S. and Canada.

    Click here for Consumer Products Safety Commission (CPSC) Press Release.

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