Healthier Generation & McDonald’s Announce New Global Happy Meal Commitment

On February 15, 2018, Healthier Generation and McDonald’s announced new, bold steps in our commitment to increase families’ access to fruit, vegetables and low-fat dairy. We first joined forces in 2013, when McDonald’s removed soda from the Happy Meal section of its menu boards in addition to other pivotal changes to the popular meal. While our 2013 commitments are not yet complete, we are ahead of schedule with progress and our results are impressive.

We are now furthering our commitment series to include five new Global Happy Meal Goals by 2022. Healthier Generation's latest commitment with McDonald’s means more meaningful progress toward reducing kids’ calories, fat, salt and sugar from Happy Meal bundles as offered on menu boards – and promoting more water.

Goal #1: Offer Balanced Meals 

In the United States, McDonald’s USA is accelerating its actions by making the following defaults on the Happy Meal menu throughout 2018: 

  • Listing only the following entrée choices: Hamburger, 4-piece and 6-piece Chicken McNuggets
  • Replacing the small French fries with kids-sized fries in the 6-piece Chicken McNugget meal, which decreases the calories and sodium in the fries serving by half
  • Reformulating chocolate milk to reduce the amount of added sugar
  • Later this year, bottled water will be added as a beverage choice on Happy Meal menu boards.

Goal #2: Simplify Ingredients 

Continue efforts to remove artificial flavors and added colors from artificial sources, and reduce artificial preservatives  

Goal #3: Be Transparent with Happy Meal Nutrition Information

Make nutrition information available for Happy Meal bundle offerings on McDonald’s owned websites and mobile apps used for ordering where they exist and as technologies change over time 

Goal #4: Market Responsibly 

Ensure all Happy Meal bundles advertised to children will meet McDonald’s Global Happy Meal Nutrition Criteria (as stated in Goal #1) and continue to meet existing local/regional advertising pledges with respect to marketing to children, whichever is strictest. 

Goal #5:  Increase Purchase of Foods and Beverages that Contain Recommended Food Groups in Happy Meals 

Use innovative strategies to help serve more foods and beverages containing fruit, vegetables, low-fat dairy, whole grains, lean protein and/or water within Happy Meals