innocent drinks juice our drinks us news family bored? press innocent kids health careers
 
daily thoughts
weekly news
 
innocent - healthy jan
innocent - healthy jan
fruit picker
the dudes banana plane iPhone app


long live Alex
daily thoughts

This is what's on our mind today.
If you fancy getting a weekly digest in your inbox, join the family here

« to burger or not to burger | Main | win big »

May 02, 2007

Comments

Whatever your intentions, it's your customers perception that matters.

I'm not surprised that the co-founder had to post, given that you've clearly polarised your customers.

Good brands are like gold dust, and you shouldn't mess with them in the way you're now doing.

In my view 9% is far too high a negative view, there's a one to ten rule here - every 10 people who say yes are wiped out by every one person who says no.

So on balance, you did the right thing by taking a survey, but you didn't interpret the results correctly.

I've said it before, you must have a long term view (unless you can hear the stock market calling). Pull out.

Interesting that all of these comments are now archived on the web. I wonder when these discussions will start to filter through into the national press?...

Time to prep and bolster your pr team if you haven't done so already.

Well, there is still something to be seen, even if one can stomach innocent drinks at mcdonalds. Their burgers are very cheap, on account of their appalling practices in cattle farming. If parents buy them that garbage is because it is cheap, (otherwise they would go to hamburger union and the like), will they pay the price of an innocent drink?. Let's hope so

I think the philosophy about getting fruit to more kids is brilliant, and fits perfectly with the innocent ethos. It is this message which needs to be communicated to your customers before everyone freaks out even more!

We had a huge debate on this over a bbq at the weekend and it was really interesting. Those of us who are into being 'ethical' & 'healthy' and who feel part of the innocent buzz were all totally anti the McDs move. But those who werent as passionate about innocent saw it as a good thing. Now Ive heard why you are doing it - getting fruit to more kids - I am (kind of) more for it.

Im guessing you arent allowed to do any pr on this trial stage but, if / when you do go national then you will need to do a huge pr campaign pushing the 'doing it for the kids' message.... but get ready for some crisis management too!!

I think i'm still sitting on the fence too - it's nothing to do with whether it's good marketing to get more kids to drink smoothies - of course that goes without saying (though surely you have other distribution options?) but whether it's right for your ethical brand to be associated with probably the world's least ethical and the long-term damage that will do to your reputation.

My worry is that McDs will fare well - seen to be trying to do the right thing in the face of mountains of criticism where you guys will come off worse - alienating a lot of your customers who love the fact you have built one of the most respected UK brands AND a sucessful business without losing touch with what's right.

However, it's a bit rich to criticise you for McDs when you can buy your smoothies in Tesco and Starbucks who you could also argue have been tarnished with the same brush recently. But McDs is surely the thin end of the wedge is it not?

In the short term it might boost sales and get your brand in front of new customers who (might) have little experience with healthy eating, but it's the long-term damage to your brand in the eyes of your existing loyal customers that you might never recover from... do you really want that?

Having said all that I'll probably still buy from you but somehow it just won't be with the same happy vibes...

People might buy the rational argument - but hardly anyone will hear the rational argument, they will just see the juxtaposition of two totally different brands.

McDonalds will be the winners and Innocent the losers.

(Btw, I eat at McDonalds and don't drink smoothies, but I know whose brand I have more attraction to!)

two weeks ago i would have believed that both the following scenarios were the creation of lunatics; (1) ian paisley cracking jokes with malcolm mcguinness and (2) innocent getting into bed with mcdonalds. the former deserves applause whilst the latter dismay. ironic that the innocent decision coincides with release of the movie 'fast food nation'. i loved the innocent brand, its standards, irreverance and what it stood for. I've advocated their consumption during every waking hour but this decision has left me in need of a sit down. McD have been the purveyors of appalling working practices for two generations and if they could get away with it now they would continue to provide the nation with unhealthy food sourced using intensive practices and served by a legion of the over worked and woefully paid. regardless of how many more innocent cartons might be sold McD should not be part of the strategy as my hope was that the success of fresh new brands like innocent, driven by new consumer expectations, would help to drive McD and their like into the wilderness and hasten their overdue demise. My loyalty has evaporated but who cares for that in the face of profit and progress.

I am really disappointed in your collaboration with MacDonalds despite your
reasons of reaching more people. It still means that kids will eat the
burgers and your smoothie will not offset the impact of that. Combining
healthy foods with non-healthy does not teach kids anything. I would like
you to do a trial in a few months and ask the kids what they like best about
MacDonalds, their first answer I believe will be related to the toy and the
second the burgers/chips, your lovely (not so innocent now) smoothies will
not feature. What a strange nation we are, also allowing Mac Ds to sponsor
the Olympics - what message does that send to the younger generation.?


Inspired by your company and its ethos - a sad day I think.

I stopped going to MacDonalds in the 1980's after it was found that in the USA they had been giving money to NORAID which was ending up supporting the IRA. However that nonsense stopped a long time ago but I still despise MacDonalds for their ethics and for their part in the degradation of British society. I have loved Innocent drinks for years and from their point of view I think it is right to sell to MacDonalds. I will continue to purchased Innocent products but never ever from MacDonalds. MacDonalds is having to change their whole outlook since the rest of the public realised what rubbish they were eating.

Innocent - please promise that you won't get yourself into a position where MacDonalds, or any big corporate such as Tesco for that matter, force you to change your approach to your products. I know that their purchasing teams can be ruthless once they have have you as a supplier - look what happened to the farmers caught up with the supermarkets. The other thing that worries me is that your only a small company and if the pilot is successful and you are asked to supply MacDonalds throughout the UK will mean a step up in your production - which means getting into bed with an investment partner (think Dragons from Dragons Den people) who may want to change your approach and on a personal level it might mean that supplies where I normally get my Innocent drinks from might get reduced or disappear due to supply issues...

I can understand why people do not like this move and although I really dislike MacDonalds I applaud your business acumen as you can do this without tarnishing your ethos.
Just please stay Innocent!

It's all been said now but just to add, I'm another devoted innocent customer who will not be buying any more of your smoothies until you withdraw the implication of endorsement that this deal gives McDs. I was involved in campaigning against McDs and the environmental devastation they have contributed to, during the early 90s and I'm disgusted that a purportedly ethical business would partner up with them. The argument about bringing healthy drinks to kids just isn't enough to override this - giving people a way to feel they've offset the damage that eating at McDs does them is not the way to make future generations healthier.
I dare say that you wont miss the £5-10 approx I spent every week on your products, but at least my principles are genuinely intact, unlike yours Innocent.

You lot are idiots......if you are all that right on you'd be squeezing your own juice at home, not buying Innocent and supermarkets that stock Innocent sell cr*p food too...get a life!

I can't find justification for your involvement with McDonald's, other than a monetary one. We (who work in marketing to kids) are only too aware that just by providing a healthy option for kids does not mean that they will choose it. But it goes deeper than that. McDonalds are guilty on so many fronts - ethically, nutritionally, environmentally, socially - that anything that might work towards a healthier bottom line for them is a travesty, especially from a company that has built its reputation (and sales!) on an 'innocent' stance in the business world. By doing this you have allowed yourselves to become an ecological beard for the very kind of people that you purported to provide the antidote to.

Right, lets look at this in a positive manner. Say I go into McDonalds, and choose innocent smoothie. By doing that I am giving money to a good company that does good things, opposed to something like Coke who basically are being accused of all the bad things you are all claiming of McDonalds.
But what annoys me here is you all critisise McDonalds, but they are a bad company trying to become better, but obviously you all have too much hate and think once bad always bad.
According to Wikipedia McDonalds have...
started a joint project with Friends of the Earth to eliminate the use of polystyrene containers, only in the United States, and to reduce the amount of waste produced.
Made the nutritional information about each meals avaliable.
Started selling 100% Rainforest Alliance Certified Coffee.
Experimented with making LEED-Certified buildings.
Etc etc

Search on www.treehugger.com and you will see a number of things McDonalds have been trying to do better.

I say well done for Innocent for going into this. Sure McDonalds are still kinda bad, but they are trying to be good.

Another thing, do you associate Irn Bru, Coke, Fanta, MinuteMaid Orange and Apple juice (or whatever the current fruit juices are) with McDonalds? I certainly don't so I don't see how Innocent will be either in the mind of the average consumer.

Good luck and hopefully you can get McDonalds to start making "Innocently Happy" meals.
I say it is good to get your product out in markets that are not your average consumer. If you constantly placed your drinks in health bars or 100% organic, fairtrade, independent, environmentally friendly cafes you are only going to make the good people stay good, but with this you can preach to the masses and convert the "bad" to the way of the good.

Once again good stuff, hope to hear more from you guys soon.

I'm not surprised to see such a vociferous response to the news of your McD partnership.
I applaud your mission to bring fruit to as wide as possible an audience... but:
you let mcdonalds - a company with a shocking track record in health, employee relations, marketing to kids, and the environment - bask in the reflected glory of your hard-built brand. It's a masterstroke by them. something no healthy salad effort could get close to.
so no matter how valiant your mission - something no-one can deny you - ultimately you are simply endorsing a corporate behemoth that is physically incapable of saving its own brand except via desperate partnerships with brands like yours.
You have given the pestered parent population just one more reason to go to Macdonalds and support everything that's bad about our corporate world.

Supermarkets sell burgers fries etc. but i dont see any one complaining about innocent being sold there. Tesco has been at the centre of controversy over its business practices just like McDonalds has but no one moans about innocent drinks being sold there.

Have you thought about the fact that introducing smoothies to McDonalds might make people think it's a healthier place, and therefore ok to eat there? They go for a smoothie thinking it's healthy, and add a burger (they're not really going for just a drink are they, or they'd pop into a newsagents). People end up eating more rubbish as a result.

Sorry to say, me-no-like it.
I think this is a Bad Idea.
Anything related to McDonalds leaves a bad taste in my mouth.
I shan't be buying Innocent for a while.

I was absolutley gutted to learn you were selling to McDonalds. Even if it is a trial I expected so much more of innocent.

Yes - it's true kids would be able to get more fruit by drinking your smoothies at McD's instead of a fizzy drink..... but the implications are so much more than just that one drink.

You have a very strong brand image of nutrition and goodness - by linking to McD's there is a real sense of you endorsing thier whole offering. Some mums are surely going to say - "well if innocent is there McD's meal can't be all that bad".

Reading your blog above - very much reminded me of the "spin" I see written by big profit obbessed corporates. It made me sad :-( and angry.

Your bigger than this.

I'm not going to add anything to the debate here but must add my support to all the people who've said that this is a complete travesty.

Imagine: trial goes well, innocent in all mcdonalds, innocent quadruples in size, mcdonalds are offered cheaper smoothies and dumps innocent, innocent folds. Or they threaten to dump innocent but will keep selling them if they were only a little cheaper, never mind about all that ethical rubbish...

Sorry, no excuse, innocent have only short term money to gain from this and everything to loose.

etc etc, I could go on.

Just Say No.

I have just found out about your trial collaboration with Mc D's... What are you thinking??? Your the opposite of them!

You have built such a strong brand and have such loyal customers (me and my girlfriend spend about £10 a week on your smoothies) could you not see that this would piss them off?

I think its the idea of you being associated with them thats ruined it for me, its such a shame its gotta be about the money, stop it now guys before it backfires bigtime...

Im not gonna boycott you (My Girlfriend wouldn't let me...) But i hope to hear soon that you have listened to your real customers and are not going ahead with the venture...

Innocent may get a fat load of profit from this move, but 10% of that profit will still go to charity. That profit will still go into researching new sustainable packaging and spreading the message and ethics of the company, which will not change just because they're being sold to a dubious company. And best of all, that profit will go into making more delicious smoothies, maybe reduce the price a little and get the Innocent brand out there and accessible to everyone.

I first bought an Innocent smoothie in a supermarket and, like many people, I bought it because it looked nice rather and it was on offer than through any knowledge of the company. I liked the smoothie, read the carton and liked the sound of what it was doing, and it made me think about the impact of the other things I bought.

Maybe somebody in McD's who hadn't considered the option before will see the bright and cheerful packaging, chuckle at the funny bits and maybe be inspired to think a bit about their impact on the world and what they leave behind.

The more places sell it, the better I say. Maybe somebody else (maybe even McD's!) will be inspired like I was.

People in this age are consumers and they will consume what is there in front of them. It's easy to critize but its hard to change ingrained habits and I applaud Innocents efforts to get their product and ethos out there in front of everyone.

Everybody stop whinging and boycotting and spend your energies promoting the ethics you obviously hold so dear. We are consumers and our power in this capitalistic society is immense. Buy fairtrade! Buy local! Buy organic! Buy recyclable and biodegradable! And buy Innocent wherever you can!

I don't know why, but I watched this at the weekend and this bit made me think of McGate. Some of it works well, some less so; it even has an innocent reference.

Long Live Austin, Long Live innocent

DR. EVIL - However, isn't it ironic, Mr. Powers, that the very things you stand for; swinging,free love, parties, distrust of authority- are all now, in the Nineties, considered to be...evil?

AUSTIN - No, man, what we swingers were rebelling against were uptight squares like you, whose bag was money and world domination. We were innocent man. If we'd known the consequences of our sexual liberation, we would have done things differently, but the spirit would have remained the same. It's freedom, man.

DR. EVIL - Face it, freedom failed.

AUSTIN - No, what we have now is freedom and responsibility, its a very groovy time.

DR. EVIL - Really, there's nothing more pathetic than an aging hipster.

As Austin says 'the spirit remains the same'

So...apparently innocents reputation is going to be tarnished in the public mind, but they are also doing this to make more money? I believe that's what we call a "contradiction".
Would it make sense as a business decision to lose a massive base of loyal customers to gain a few who will occasionally buy one with a happy meal?

I think innocent can be trusted to know their business. They aren't selling out, just trying to get their drinks where they can do more good. And yes, it will most likely be profitable for them. They are a BUSINESS.

i've just spent the bext part of my lunch hour reading everyones comments, and my gosh how harsh can some of you people be. It's like watching big mean boys beat up the cutest kid in class!

I think it's a smashing idea. All those whiney kids from the local shopping centre that have nearly burst a vein having a tantrum while begging their stressed out parents to take them to Maccie D's. Giving them Innocent smoothies with their chicken nuggets is excellent parental revenge, the kids think they got their own way and dear old Mum knows the kids are actually getting something a wee bit healthy without having a fight on their hands, everyone's a winner.

And just think, if Innocent sell lots and lots of smoothies with Maccie D's they can develop more yummy flavours (rah) AND more money goes to the foundations they have set up, the lovely people and their values havent changed.

Go innocent!!

Chrissie

PS I shall be buying several smoothies on the way home to make up for the nasty people that said they wont buy them any more

I also think it's a good idea.

McD's are making a move in the right direction by buying from an independant, ethical company. It's a small step in the right direction, surely people can't argue against that?

I hope people realise this is a positive decision both for Innocent and for the young customers of McDonalds.

Good luck guys x

THE TRUTH IS OUT: INNOCENT IS JUST LIKE EVERY OTHER COMPANY - profit before ethics.

I am gutted. I have been a loyal Innocent consumer since the start and actually beleived the company was something special.

I simply don't buy all the corporate spin about the link-up with McDs being a route to getting more youngsters to eat fruit - McD's are already offering Tropicana, so the fruit gap is effectively filled already.

THIS IS ALL ABOUT MONEY!!!

since posting my comments on 4th may, one of innocent's directors - giles brook - has personally contacted me, asking for a chat on the telephone

thanks giles, but let's keep the conversation transparent i.e. on this blog where everyone can see it

for ease of reference, here are my comments again:

9% of your customers think you shouldnt be dealing with mcdonalds

those 9% are passionate people who no doubt championed your brand

they will now passionately demonise your brand

you should pull out of this partnership no matter how much money is involved

as for you mr mcdonalds ... you make your partnerships with the likes of greenpeace sounds positive ... the reality is greenpeace CAUGHT YOU TRASHING THE AMAZON RAINFOREST to feed the chickens for your mcnuggets!

you say your customers will decide ... of course they will ... they eat your junk already, so they are hardly going to object to an innocent smoothie

if i were innocent, i'd be more worried about what their customers are going to decide

mr mcdonalds ... you could shut the doors of all your junk stores and the world would sing ... you wouldnt be missed and the planet would be far better off

mr innocent ... the jury is definitely out ... you are good at PR, so it should be a fine battle

i am one of the 9% ... you've lost me and i will be passionately spreading the word that you've sold out

I'm amazed by some of the comments on here.

Is Innocent still making fantastic smoothies? Yes.

Is Innocent still donating to charity? Yes.

Is Innocent still supporting the Rainforest Alliance? Yes.

Does Innocent still have a commitment to recycling? Yes.

Boycotting Innocent for taking a sound commercial decision (it is only a trial after all) and one that has no impact on their ethos whatsoever is just laughable. If successful, it has the potential to secure their long-term future and therefore continue to give us all the option of something other than cola.

I suppose all the boycotters will be on bottled water or PJs from now on?

Oh deary deary me! NO NO NO please please don't break my heart and cross over to the dark side. This is so wrong. Innocent drinks have absolutley nothing in common with "Go it large McD". BACK OUT NOW!


So you say it is the right this thing to do because in doing so you are giving kids more opportunity to eat fruit – the fact they will gain this benefit, while chomping on the fatty burger, chewing the salty chips and polishing off a sugary McFlurry?

Sorry – but this does not seem to balance out.

I understand why commercially this would sound enticing for both you and McDonalds. Piggybacking on their global brand will undoubtedly increase your sales (even if you alienated a large portion of existing customers).

And you certainly have what some would say they are missing - a brand synonymous with health, goodness and purity. No doubt these days a much better hook to reel in parents or children, than a cheap toy or a slightly creepy clown.

I can even see the good intentions in your ethical train of thought. That 90% of children go without enough fruit and veg is a damning indictment of the lack of knowledge we seem to have as a society about what is a healthy diet.

But surely there are better ways than this to tackle this issue.

Just compare the ingredients labels on your respective products and you must see how worlds apart you both are, and why I feel you make such unwelcome bedfellows.

If it is the money – I would rather you just said so. We all need to make money I guess. I am just disappointed that Innocent was a company that appeared to say, “here is how to be both an ethical and a successful business” – now you seem to show by your actions that the way forward is to join forces with a company like McDonalds. If you can’t beat them…

Will I stop buying your drinks? – Well they still taste so good; almost good enough to take away the bad taste this leaves.

Then again I was also hooked on McFlurry’s, but I have managed to avoid McDonald’s for years.

Well done for getting your drinks into McDonalds. I hope you decide to go ahead after the trial.

I'm sure most of your customers who are against this would describe themselves as liberal caring people so you have to wonder why they think it's okay for kids whose parents shop in Waitrose to have access to healthy fruit drinks but those whose fat chav parents take them to McDonalds must not be allowed to have the same access.

Unfortunately, as is too often the case, I think there is some snobbery going on here.

Nobody with half a brain thinks McDonalds is a great thing for the planet but as long as kids are in there you need to be in there alongside them with your healthy drinks.

Good luck to you. This initiative makes me want to support innocent more not less.

Hello.

I'm a bit torn between the two arguments but I have the following comments...

1) Innocent has been in Starbucks for yonks and Starbucks is owned by McDonalds so how come that was ok?

2) How long until Michael Moore has a documentary at Cannes about how Innocent sold out to McDonald for a few extra bucks?

Rowldo

I heard the interview on 5 Live tonight which alerted me to this - I hadn't heard about the trial until today. We have very little disposable income in our household and we spend a disproportionate amount of that money on Innocent Smoothies for ourselves and our children - and I hadn't even thought about that, or the reasons for it, until today. I wonder how many other Innocent fans do the same, and what effect this will have on their spend in the future - that mere 9% of people who were against this trial could turn out to be an extremely costly one for you as they could well turn out to be the ones who spend the most, and those who are passionately against this move will never come back. Interesting that I had to search around to find this bit - if you're really as pleased with your decision as you suggest then why not encourage comment from your home page? Surely this is about as big an issue as you've faced in your brand's life, so it's strange that it's so hard to find on your site. I'm sure we'll buy your products in the future but Innocent certainly doesn't feel quite the same anymore and I probably won't seek out Innocent Smoothies in the same way as I once did when there are others available (usually at a cheaper price). And we're unlikely to make the one and a half hour journey to take our children to Fruitstock this year even though last year was fab, as I don't think it would feel the same any more. Sorry as this is a bit of a ramble which reflects my confused feelings on the matter - bewildered and just a bit sad that you turned out to be the same as all the others. Yet of course you're in business to make money, most people are... so I'm not sure why I feel like this. Odd isn't it.

After listening to the interview on radio 5, I was disappointed that this apeared to be just a standard set of 'hold the line' corporate responses.

Part of paying the price for innocent products (they are not cheap!) was not only paying for a quality product, but supporting a company that ran the notion that it was a company with a set of ethical beliefs. But I can no longer believe this.

I am sure your new collaboration with McD's will more than offset any imapct of the loss of my custom. Good luck to you, I best go buy some fruit!

I think I've just worked out why I'm feeling sad. Quite a few of us are suddenly mentioning the price of Innocent Smoothies. Up until today I can honestly say that we have never questioned why we pay more for Innocent, why we don't just buy the Tesco own brands ones or whatever. From various bits of Marketing training I've picked up over the years, I understood that isn't just about price to the consumer, they are buying into your brand and if they're happy with you they'll follow you to the ends of the earth. I suspect there aren't many hardcore Innocent customers who would follow MacDonalds to the ends of the earth. From now on my buying decisions in the supermarket for smoothies are likely to come down to price as the (probably imaginary) ethical stance and values associated with Innocent have shifted in my head, even though probably nothing has changd in reality. What a sad day. Then again, perhaps I should just get more sleep. Goodnight.

Remember that Innocent drinks are available at Tesco, Starbucks, etc. If it's not OK for Innocent to deal with McDonalds, should they pull out of all large profit-driven corporations? Neither of the companies I mention are whiter-than-white, but many people happily contribute to Tesco's £2billion-a-year profit by buying Innocent smoothies in their stores.

Be consistent, folks. If you object to Innocent working with McDonalds, then stop buying your groceries at Tesco and start using farms and markets. It's a little bit hypocritical to choose Innocent smoothies because of their company values, then buy those smoothies in a giant supermarket that puts price above everything.

I hate McDonalds. I haven't been there in at least a decade and I'm certainly not going to start now.

I love Innocent and have been buying their smoothies for several years and again, will not be stopping now.

Innocent are a business and need to grow their sales if they are to keep pace in this hugely commercial world. I can't see how selling to McDonalds is any worse than selling to supermarkerst most of whom have unspeakable business practices and I avoid like the plague. That said, making yummy smoothies won't help Innocent stay in business if they can't reach enough of the public to sell them, so it's understandable they would be stocked in supermarkets who seem to have a stranglehold on most of the food shopping market.
McDonalds also get a huge footfall, so it make sense to sell there. Innocent for me has always been about simple, delicious, unadulterated fruit drinks so where they are stocked is not a huge issue as long as I can buy them (hey Innocent, how about supplying a couple of my local farm shops?).

Someone said in this discussion that combining healthy food with non-healthy food did not work. Are you serious? Have you ever heard of a balanced diet? Do YOU only EVER eat nutritionally balanced meals, prepared at home from fresh ingredients?

Frankly, if people are going to be eating that garbage, it makes even more sense for smoothies to be available so they are taking in SOME nutrients at least...

I'll still be buying Innocent. Just not from McDonalds!

Why is McDonalds so much worse than Tesco or Starbucks or any of the other big multi-national complanies that stock Innocent? Tesco sell a lot of very unhealthy foods, yet they still stock Innocent and nobody seams to care! McDonalds stocking them is a great idea, just giving kids another option from Coke. Your never going to be able to stop children wanting Happy Meals so the least we can do is make some portions of it healthier and McDonalds are trying to do this with the fruit or carrot bags and the options of milk, juice or smoothies instead of Coke!

It sounds like if some people on this forum had their way Innocent would only be stocked at teeeny little organic corner-shops and they would only sell 1 or 2 drinks a day and go bust!! just remmeber this is a commerical world!

I'm just surprised that such a brand literate company as Innocent couldn't see that it will damage your image by hooking up with Mc Donalds. Plus, in the area of your trial the streets won't just be littered with discarded Big Mac cartons there will be Innocent bottles too - and in a stroke you've aligned yourself with the throwaway junk food culture too,

Go for it. Whatever encourages kids to eat more healthily is a great thing.

I hope it is a successful venture for you.

Your products are excellent and the more widely they are available the better.

xx Alex

It was the Chris Evans Show that first brought it to my attention that you are selling innocents drinks in Macdonalds happy meals. I've look through many of the post on your site and can see there are many mixed views to your teaming up with MacDonald’s. I'm sure that you had a difficult decision to make with your conservational business agreement. I can see why you believe this is beneficial to your company, the benefit of reaching out to a new market, MacDonald’s money (I’m assuming it's lots) and the possibility of kids drinking something healthy. I can also see why you shouldn’t, so many people hate MacDonald’s once you side with a company like that even if for a day your reputation will be tarnished for very long time if not for ever. I don't believe the kids that eat Macdonalds will choose innocents of Cola, I wouldn't of done at that age.

I stopped visiting MacDonald’s about 11 years ago amongst other companies, through my efforts I have managed to bring many others on the MacDonald’s ban. I don't believe that my abstaining will affect MacDonald’s as they have very loyal if not addicted customers. Innocent on the other hand have a completely different customer base. Do you not think that the majority of people who by your juices are the kind of customers that avoid MacDonald’s like the plague, do you not think they will buy a juicer instead of innocent drinks.

At first MacDonald’s were on my hate list of companies, I don't hate MacDonald’s any more its the government and their customers that disappoint me. They should never of been allowed to get so big and open so many stores. I don't believe a change of image is the right move for MacDonald’s at the end of the day MacDonald’s is a burger bar they are not meant to be healthy. That’s the whole point of a burger and chips it's an unhealthy food option. Don't try to change evil evil will change you.

I wanted to congratulate you on the Green Globe and the great Britons award. I would have been over the moon that Innocents is receiving the praise it should but know I didn’t know what to do; I just hope you make the right decision.

i have gradually become a bit disillusioned with your products.

the general consensus among the people i know with a decent knowledge of nutrition seems to be:

it's likely that it isn't beneficial to consume such a large amount of fruit that you 'cram' into your smoothies at the same time, as our digestive systems are more adapted to eating fruit, let alone the high amounts of natural sugars involved.

it's misleading to use the label 'superfoods', particularly in reference to foods such as carrots; there doesn't seem to have been sufficient research on goji berries to determine their safety and health-deriving properties, and the amount you put into a smoothie hardly justifies the labelling; acai is indeed an incredible fruit but how much of its properties does it retain when in your smoothies? for a start i imagine the pasteurisation process (which you seem to mention as little as possible) destroys the omega oils which are so important and make this such a unique fruit.

I dont have kids, I dont eat Macburger, i do however enjoy a nice innocent smoothie, not being able to have any dairy it's nice to see a decent non dairy drink, so can we focus on the bigger picture, firstly business is business, and if you can combine business with kids getting more fruit then great,I se too many little kids eating and drinking krap and it annoys me, I think if innocent wanted to sell out they could have in a bigger way and far sooner then now, lets cut them some slack and relax people, it's only a drink, I personally would like to see it in a bar or pub, is that going to make people drink more beer because their in a pub?? no the more placs I can buy the drink the better, the only thing that would annoy me is if i couldnt get coconut flavour.

I finally came around to read innocent's explanation about this weird association. Of course I understand that you want to bring good stuff in the hands of the children but why Mc Do??? In France we simply say: "Pactiser avec le démon" (seems to be "jump into bed with the enemy" in uk). I use to love you and your funny packaging, the jokes and everything, I'm afraid I'm not laughing anymore... Your smoothies are expensive but it was a pleasure to pay for healthy and cool products. I don't know what to think now, I think I will wait and see, I guess you can catch what I would like to hear anyway...

Hi,
I just want to say thank you for giving us a healthier choice at McDonalds. And well done too.
My little boy (despite my best efforts) sees McDs as a treat. He currently picks the milk in his happy meal to go with his bag of fruit, hopefully one day soon he can pick an Innocent Smoothie.
I think that anything that encourages children and their families to get more fruit and find out how fun it can be is a good thing. And to do this through Innocent smoothies is excellent.
I'm sorry that some folk don't see it that way, but I can't understand it.
So well done, thank you and good luck!

no, please no, it just isn't right -- the thing is McD's want to be seen as somewhere to go a for a healthy nosh, but they aren't, if they wanted to be they could be and that does not mean having an occasional salad option and a fruit drink, it means being somewhere with core values re food. McD's are using the innocent hard earned reputation to benefit from, it is a v smart move by McDs and why they have some of the best paid marketing staff in the world. If McD want to sell fruit smoothies they could just make their own and profit away, they want innocent smoothies - that says it all. Don't fall for it I say. yes it is good to give kids alternatives but this doesn't in any meaningful way, it helps give a message that the rubbish that McD's makes it millions from is healthy when it isn't, only a v v slim (ha ha) % is.

Well, personally, I'm glad you are conducting a trial in Mcdonalds. At last a proper alternative to fizzy/artificial sweetener-laden drinks (you know the sort, either form the "pump" or in sports bottles, pretending to have some fruit in but mainly having aspartame in, and water). The milk and orange juice containers they currently use are not child friendly at all - both of my children have managed to pour their drink all over themselves at some point(and that's with a McD Straw)! Your drinks come in decent spill-resistant packaging, with a proper straw! We don't have McDonald's-type food often (2/3 times a year at most) but when we do, I encourage my children to choose the healthiest options.

So thank you for giving us a REAL choice. I hope it works out really well for you - and you never know, some of your good habits might (just might) rub off on McD's!!

Hello there my dearest innocent peeps.

Well it's very controversial, so much so it has compelled me to write, when normally i wouldn't bother.
I have been stocking your smoothies and juicy waters in my cafe since opening in May 2005. We have gone from people turning their noses up at the random fruit combinations, to the smoothies now practially flying out of the doors. your product has gone from strength to strength because people want to buy in to the cosy, healthy persona portrayed by said smoothie. I hear people cooing over a new flavour wondering how many of their 5 a day it will be. This is all great. People love the product too, because it is a nice story of how innocent began and it's independance. As someone who has strong enough feelings about independance to go it alone and set up a city centre cafe competing with the usual generic and frankly boring coffee shops, i find it really hard to understand where you are coming from, other than the financial benefits to be gained. I would never consider supporting a company like mc donalds with my lovely homemade cakes if my business grew to the size of yours. While mc donalds is trying to clean up it's act, it's still selling terribly processed food. did any of you not watch Jamie's school dinners?!
I fully support the idea of children eating better food, we have a children's menu without a chip in sight in my cafe.
Children only ever get the idea that mc donalds is a treat because ridiculous parents put it in their heads. Processed food with many future health implications is simply not a treat. They shouldn't have it in the first place. Surely getting smoothies into every school would be a better move.
The whole thing is a very controversial move and I fear that this may put many people off buying your smoothies.

Hi,

I used to love your drinks and have kept your shelter charity hats on the bottles of my wine rack adding a new bobbly hat every few days. I really was a fan of the brand. Since this nasty Mc.D news however I'm afraid that I've only managed to buy 2 bottles of your product - it just doesn't taste the same anymore.
What have you done? :-(

“Any fool can criticize, condemn, and complain - and most fools do.” (Dale Carnegie).

Well done Innocent. Well done McDonalds. Some people understandably find change a bit disconcerting and prefer to stick with what they know – it’s a lot safer that way. Don’t be deterred – it’s a change for good.

I am very disappointed in the decision to get involved with a company like McDonalds.

I won't be buying any more of your drinks - I thought, as a company, you were a little bit different.

But it seems I was wrong.

Having already posted on the other page, I wanted to add something. I have just gone on maternity leave from a pub/hotel/restaurant (with a chef who will only use local products and is very very well informed on what he puts into his food and what kiddies eat who come to us). We have both been on at the boss to stock Innocent, but we can't really cos of the shelf life. So we got a half win with stocking Bottlegreen (sorry guys). What does that mean? It meant that when well meaning parents came in and order Diet coke instead of full fat coke (which in itself is not great) with the misguided sense of goodness that somehow it is better, I can suggest something else which actually IS. I don't know how many of you guys have looked up on sweeteners like Acesulphame K and Aspatame (sp, sorry) both of which now completely replace sugar in all diet drinks (and god forbid, read the label on Toothkind ribena or those Robinsons drinks that currently can be chosen with a happy meal), but, well...you should! Trying adding carcinogenic to your search string.

Having a healthy alternative alongside these products in ANY outlet can only be a good thing. I am sad that it has to be macdonalds - but where better to start. Kids association with MaccyDs has only ever been a good one because they have spent years and years marketing to our children. The groundwork is already there from a sound business POV and a kids-getting-more-fruit POV.

And all of you with children, I really would suggest reading up on those two chemicals - it may make a little more sense why Innocent would want to become a choice alongside them!

This is a serious dissapointment, I mean deeply depressing. Too much to hope that you would not be suckered into giving your seal of approval to McD, because that is how the McD customers will percieve it regardless of what you write here. People who like me and friends and family have boycotted them for years will now include you in the boycott because you really can't sit down with these world destroyers without being tarred by the same brush. It isn't about the filth they peddle to children and adults, we don't boycott them for dodgy nutritional values, this treacherous company is despoiling thousands and thousands of acres of land, adding to the death of communities and the planet. Of course you have a majority vote in favour, so go with the masses, I have bought my last so-called Innocent Smoothie.

This just in from Innocent.

I quote:

- "not just a sales opportunity".

- mcdonalds should be seen as a "treat"?!?!?!

- but "McDonalds is not something we want to promote, and certainly wouldn't invite to our village fete."

It all sounds deeply divided to me Innocent. And so you should be.

You're dividing your customers over this, for sure.

As they say in the Dragons' Den, I'm out.

Pete


From: "innocent drinks"

Subject: Fwd: ))) innocent ((( RE: special innocent village fete announcement

Date: Thu, 7 Jun 2007 11:13:59 +0100 (GMT-1)

Hello there,

We stock our drinks in a whole lot of places and as you've heard, we've just started selling one of our products (kids strawberries, blackberries and raspberries) on a trial basis for 6 months in 80 McDonalds restaurants in the North East of England.

We really believe it is worth trying this as a valid way to give kids more access to fruit and not just a marketing ploy or sales opportunity. We are trying lots of different routes to meet this goal, including subsidised wedges to schools, so this is just one of many.

There is a very healthy debate about this going on our blog, 'to burger or not to burger' and to 'burger or not to burger part II' so you might well find it enlightening if you click here: http://tinyurl.com/26fsvn and http://tinyurl.com/yu7ssb (this second part has many more comments).

Essentially we will never change our principles or the way we do business for anyone, be they McDonalds, Tesco or our local corner shop. McDonalds is somewhere kids eat, and it should certainly be seen as a treat. And as such, McDonalds is not something we want to promote, and certainly wouldn't invite to our village fete.

So no. No McDonalds in Regents Park in August.

I hope you will be though...

I'd love to see McDonalds start offering innocent smoothies on their own; as an adult, I would love to be able to pick up a smoothie instead of coke at the drive thru when I'm in a rush for dinner :)

In Innocent's original post on this matter, Dan said

>>>>>
It wasn't a decision we took lightly, we even held a meeting for the whole company one lunchtime to get people's thoughts on whether we should or not
>>>>>>
Aware of the sensitivity, Innocent had got all its staff together twice to discuss the decision (but it was a decision that had already been taken rather than one that was to be debated).
<<<<<<<

I fear that at some stage in the original discussions (by senior management, not Innocent staff) someone said that the end (ie money to fund Innocent Foundation and other good works) justifies the means.

This is a slippery slope...

Hello Gowan

Not quite sure what your comment is hinting at, but I can assure you that the vote we had here at Fruit Towers was fundamental in us making our decision. It wasn't something that we did just for show - that would be insulting to the people who work here, who are good friends as well as colleagues.

This is all pretty depressing stuff and a little ironic that it has happened to a company called innocent. I'm not sure it can plead innocence here though.
It is clear that McD would like to be associated with successful products and what better than Innocent as the sheer number of comments from loyal customers on this blog are testament to. Name another product with such a devoted following and you can see why it means so much to McD - I only hope you are making a very healthy profit from them and far better than the retail multiples who shift far more of your stuff.
The biggest concern I think is not the trial but if Innocent go for it big time across McD - the sales to McD could well dwarf those of retail multiples and it may prove difficult to stand up to McD and its ruthless stranglehold on suppliers which would make the UK multiples look like cuddly kittens. So beware.
If Innocent were so interested in the health of kids, why not set up its own fast healthy food outlets, maybe with the Pret founders (yes I know it's part owned by McD). You could franchise it out and get all these enthusiastic supporters on this website to put their money where there mouth is and run a fast healthy food outlet, "Healthily Innocent"

To All at Fruit Towers,

This post, will no doubt repeat many view points already expressed so apologies for any repetition. I also appreciate you taking the time to reply to the customers you value so highly, but I am afraid that I have to join the long list of disappointed supporters of Innocent.

I appreciate and accept that your approach to business has not altered but the ethics behind this are questionable. The impressive work that is taken on by all at Fruit Towers for the environment, charity, getting the message of the fruit benefits across and many more is outstanding but by association to an organisation such as McDonalds this only disparages these achievements. The Innocent brand will become a gimmick to a company that does very little in encouraging healthy eating let alone the severe lack of a green attitude towards the environment amongst other faults.

I understand that by children choosing an Innocent Smoothie you feel you have achieved a great goal but again this is somewhat diminished by the junk food they consume alongside the drink. The type of people that frequent these outlets regularly do not have the correct attitude to food in general initially so therefore the idea of introducing them to the Innocent brand and all it stands for is somewhat lost. There has to be a better way of introducing the benefits of Innocent Smoothies to children than alongside that of a calorific breakfast/lunch/dinner at their local McDonalds.

I hope that this trial is all that it remains, just a trial. I am very disappointed that a company I was once proud to support has (albeit on a small, possibly temporary scale) sold out so easily to the Big Boys and allowed their treasured brand to be used as what will become a marketing gimmick (a somewhat cynical stance but true no doubt) to suggest this outlet is somewhere healthy to take children to (and ethically a ‘good’ company). The business principles do remain but the ethics are somewhat questionable and therefore as a customer, I regrettably find myself questioning my belief in you as a company.

Oh pooh. Which stance to take? It seems that by using McDonalds as an outlet, you are somehow endorsing their products, their brand and their ethics. I feel exactly the same way about Tesco et al. But what other distribution channels are there? Surely a company like Innocent should try to revolutionise the distribution channels? This is fundamentally the problem for your business, and for the consumer. How can you sell enough smoothies without using the traditional routes to market? Get the Innocent Innovation team working on that problem then we can end the debate? Put it into every school in the country? That'd be a better way to reach the kids, surely? Replace the nasty cow's milk they have to endure every morning....

the way I see it, the 2 sides of the coin are this:

For: one accepts the fact that McDs is a fact of life, and does one's best to help more people get some fruit. Maybe even changing the McDs ethos for the better.

Against: one refuses to help McDs boost its customer base by enticing in people who might otherwise shun them and go to a nice local outlet. With a bit more ethical campaigning maybe we can all help put the nasty mega-gimps out of business.

Well, for me personally I can entirely understand the argument for - but I would have to come down on the side of against. I think Innocent is in a situation where they are able to make ethical choices (which they have done to their benefit) without huge risk to business. I personally think this is one of those times, and that Innocent should make a stand against the horrid MacDonalds.

Think of it this way - if you end up improving McD's business viability, by adding even 1 customer to their base - you are wiping out an equal amount of the good work you do with your fruit producers. McDs have a horrific history of rainforest destruction, deforestation and people exploitation - something you guys are totally against.

I guess it all comes down to where you draw the line - which is your decision entirely. I'll still be an innocent drinker, but I don't think you've made the right move here, and I truly hope you will reconsider once the trial is over.

Cheers

p.s. You've made a good choice contracting in my Dad to help you with management stuff (Pi Associates). He runs an ethical business too - when he's there with you, ask him what he said to British Nuclear Fuels when they told him to 'name his price' for consultancy.

Just read in one of your labels:
“As a name, innocent is restricting. It means we can’t really start making fireworks or codpieces. Opportunities in those fields are limited with a name like ours. But making smoothies is OK (...) Of course, if our name means that we miss the opportunity to break into the flick-knife market in the future, so be it. We’ll stay innocent.”

I remained quietly on the fence until now. But that did it.
This is the first time I see Innocent talking about name, brand and business opportunities on a label, even if in a light jokey sort of way. Why does it come across (to me) as a bit confused? Identity crisis anyone? Reassurance needed?

Quite a while ago, I met a Buddhist white van driver who moved my stuff from one address to another. He told me about his dream of starting a “beautiful business”. At that time, I thought that, one way or another, any business was ugly, dirty and destructive. Such an idea coming from a Buddhist sounded like hypocrisy. But London rush-hour traffic provided us with enough time to debate the pros and cons ... and change my mind on the subject.
So I kept my eyes open, waiting for a proper beautiful business to come along.

Then there was Innocent. Finally not just a small company in someone’s garage or backyard (lovely companies in garages and backyards by the way). Or nice well-intentioned business ideas that got swallowed by the big boys. No. Innocent had the principles, the brand, the business sense (of humour?) and the yummiest product in the market. Not to mention the perfect timing. Innocent smoothies came to the market at the same time as UK people got more concerned about healthy eating. The idea of sustainable business finally started to catch on too. What could go wrong? I thought the sky was the limit.
I helped by doing my bit. Drinking the drinks, taking a couple of cartons to parties (together with a bottle of wine), buying the books and, eventually, becoming part of the family. I even organised a hen picnic party at Fruitstock, with smoothies (and champagne) for everybody. Didn’t blog an awful lot but always replied when I felt you were asking for feedback.
The more I heard about your efforts to trade lightly the more convinced I was that it was actually possible to swim with dolphins, not sharks.

Then there was the trial.
Unfortunately, there’s a difference between selling at Tesco or Starbucks and Mac Donalds. Places like Tesco or Starbucks sell innocent smoothies on their own, side by side with other products. As far as I understood, the kid smoothies are being trialed to become available as part of their very own kid’s McD Happy Meal. They’ll be complementing each other. Approving of one another.

People talked a lot about “ethics that extend beyond vitamins”. I agree with them.
But what I really want to ask is: What’s in it for Innocent?
Or... What business are you in?
Would it be healthy drinks? Or the health food sector... or even healthy lifestyle?

I particularly believe there’s more to Innocent than drinks (or the occasional little book). The brand’s got such wide possibilities that could guarantee its longevity and even beat the big guys, who knows?
I also disagree with whoever says that McD will always be there or it should be seen as a fact of life. Countries, empires and big corporations are in the business of pretending they are forever powerful, when nothing is so solid that it can never fall.

Innocent’s quest as a still relatively young company is how to swim smoothiely. Something I found out when I went dolphin watching, where there are dolphins, there are sharks too. They choose the same waters, but they keep some distance from each other’s group.
So, who do you invite in as partners...?
Whose support can you count on?
Whose support can you afford to lose?

I read on your newsletter or blog or label or somewhere else I can’t remember, that “you don’t when you’ve got it good” (I think it went on saying we can now choose from all lovely fruit drink recipes when in the writer’s past, all he had to drink was tea and stout. Or something like that). Guys, you’ve got it good. You’ve got it really good. All those prizes you keep getting are not a coincidence.
Innocent is miles apart from its competitors. People try to imitate your style, your recipes, your tone of voice, but they don’t get it. It’s not their voice. When I read your stuff, I can nearly see the person behind it. That’s why I believe you.
I can actually understand both sides of the argument. But you said you’d stay innocent. So, please do... Or I’ll tell your Mums.

Great post Sandra - I think you've articulated what a lot of people have been saying really well.

/seconded.

I'm wondering if the people who tend to rely on their innocent smoothies for fruit (aka. me...) will find it easier to justify going to McDonalds when they otherwise might have gone to Boots or something for a healthier lunch.

I can see how this partnership with McDonald’s can seem like an exciting prospect for a company like innocent who seem passionate about helping people lead healthier lifestyles. For example, ingredients that are present in products like coca-cola are sometimes cancer-causing, they can lead to things like anti-social behaviour and psychotic illnesses in later life, and are responsible for provoking hyper-activity in children, let alone adding to the waistlines of many people and creating dental problems. Surely then, it is a good thing that innocent smoothies will be available to children and adults alike in McDonald’s restaurants.

However, I think we need to educate these children first. The majority of people who make frequent visits to McDonald’s are there to purchase soft drinks like coke, and not the healthy-looking-drink-which-must-taste-horrible-since-it-is-healthy. Let’s not forget, once our taste buds become used to chemicals which exist in abundance in junk food, we become less inclined to opt for healthier, perhaps organic foods with natural tastes.

I also think that a money-making brand like McDonald’s should focus on making their menus more “green” and more “healthy” before creating partnerships with companies like innocent. After all, I doubt that they are really bothered about the health but more concerned for their slowing rate of growth due to their demonic reputation. If they were seriously worried about the obesity crisis which is particularly present in America, surely they would have amended their menus years ago, with food that is actually remotely healthy.

Innocent and McDonald’s really are polar opposites in every way, and I think innocent should look to expand in bigger and better ways. Ways that would gain them respect, not criticism.

At school the vending machines are full of junk. I’m practically forced to by this ill-tasting food when I’m hungry, but I know I would choose an innocent smoothie over it any day. This is why innocent need to make their products more widely available > more sales > higher profits > more demand > more sales > cheaper prices > more affordable > more sales … and so on. Personally I was shocked and disappointed with this partnership which I think will do more harm than good to innocent.

(

and also, strange question, but did you copy nudie smoothies or did nudie smoothies copy you? i drank them frequently in australia, you're basically EXACTLY the same apart from the name. or are you part of the same business. i'd really like to know!

Also, in order to lead a healthier lifestyle, our diets need to be BALANCED. Ten innocent smoothies a day is harmful too! And while I'm not saying that anyone will drink as obsessively as that, eating at McDonald's, whether or not you order a smoothie, straight away means you have an unbalanced and so unhealthy diet, loaded with sugars, salts, additives, sweetners etc. I think you would make a bigger impact by perhaps visiting schools and educating, by promoting yourselves. I feel you are doing the opposite with this new partnership.

Hello Miriam. To answer your question about Nudie...

A few years ago a man called Tim came over from Australia to talk to us about obtaining the license to run the innocent business in Australia. We were pretty excited - he seemed like a nice chap - so we started talking to Tim. He spent quite a bit of time at Fruit Towers getting to know us and the business.

After a while we had all of the legal papers drawn up, ready for Tim to become innocent. We were happy for him to carry on our good work on the other side of the world. But right at the last minute, Tim had a change of heart, decided not to sign and disappeared back off to Sydney.

Much to our surprise, a few months later a smoothie company called Nudie appeared in Australia. There were a few similarities to innocent. Things looked familiar. And the man behind Nudie? Why, Tim of course.

We learned our lesson.

Ouch! That must have hurt...
Perhaps they should be called Guilty, not Nudie.
I wonder if they’ve got a blog...

(spelling mistake: I meant Guiltie)

shame about Nudie! Innocent still wins though, hands down :)

I wonder if you'll be able to spend your money in hell, which is where you are all going. You, your banana phone, the fruit towers and all the nazis.

Ok, I'm not a McD fan, for all the obvious ethical reasons. But I honestly believe that Innocent is a great company, with great ethics and I do not feel that selling the drinks in McDs will make any difference to that. Getting these smoothies into McD customers, especially kids, cannot be a bad thing. Thanks for being so frank and communicative with your customers, and please ignore all these ethical high horsers - I like the way they have such strong opinions about McDs but don't care about your smoothies being sold in the big supermarkets, who are, in my opinion, ethically dubious in the whole eliminating local, independant stores way etc.

p.s... not to mention starbucks!

As a dedicated innocent drinker, i dont see it as a bad thing that innocent smoothies may being sold in mcdonalds. some comments on here are ridiculous, people are sayin innocent have boycotted all their beliefs and values, and talk as tho innocent and mcdonalds will be incorporated together and all the goodness of innocent will be over-ruled by evil mcdonalds. which has to be an over-reaction. every business needs to venture out and try new things to make their drinks more accessible to everyone. If, when in mcdonalds even one child chooses a smoothie over a sugar laden fizzy drink surely that cant be anything but good.

I'm still too upset to knit for you this year...

Come on folks. Life is full of choices. No one has to go to MaccyDs, no one has to drink innocent smoothies. I for one love innocent drinks, but I also like the occassional McDs. I don't eat it everyday, but I do like it sometimes. I don't drink innocent drinks everyday, I don't eat cereal everyday, I don't eat chocolate everyday. Let's get this in perspective, we all have choices and can exercise them as we see fit, and I would suggest that also includes the way in which the founders of innocent decide is the best way to deliver their products. Whilst I admire the way in which they have built their brand and business, global trade is a reality and innocent are no better than any other in this respect; they have plans for expansion into Europe and no doubt in time accross the world. Good luck to them and let the people decide - at least we can, unlike strawberries

I'd like to know just how successful the trial has been as its over 7 months. McDonalds has clearly tried to re-position itself by painting all its branches in London dark green and putting art on the walls...clearly the Innocent test was part of thier wider plan....so is it going well and whats next is going going global and if so how!??

Well I hate McDonalds and all that it stands for but I love Innocent drinks and think it's a good idea to sell them in McDonalds. Lets face it, McDonalds is unhealthy, so if people decide to get a smoothie with their fatty burger and salty fries then that can only be a good thing, much better than a fizzy sugary drink. I like the way you have asked your customers what they think of the idea, it really shows that you care!

Hey Guys,

Just read through most of the posts and wanted to say that I think it's a great move. Who cares if the reason for this trial was motivated by genuine compassion for kids or sheer greed? The point is that McDonalds themselves are trying to do something ethical and health-driven (because I'm sure they could have picked any old smoothie brand for less money). People seem to forget that you're actually a business and not their mother! To the readers: Innocent aren't making you walk into a McDonalds to get your smoothie fix. If you don't eat there this won't affect you in any way, shape or form. If you DO eat there, I guess you're gonna get the opportunity for a decent drink with your meal, congratulations!

I honestly hope that you make a deal with McDonalds, sell a sh*load more smoothies to kids, and use your money wisely to expand your business further get the fruit message out. More power to you Innocent... I love you regardless! x x

I'm shocked at the cynicism shown here. As was mentioned earlier in the comments, it smacks of classism.

I have no doubt that the changes McDonald's are making to their stores and to their menus are primarily driven by a desire to increase sales. They are a multinational, multi-billion dollar company, legally obliged to try to deliver the best results to their shareholders.

But despite the reasons, those changes ARE happening... do some research before glibly dismissing a company as Satan's Own Burgershack. They've reduced salt in most products. The only 'sugary fizzy drink' they offer is Coca-Cola (and Iron Bru in parts of Scotland), having long since introduced the sugar-free versions of Sprite and Fanta and heavily promoted the introduction of Coke Zero.

They sell pure, not-from-concentrate orange juice. They sell bottles of organic milk. All of their coffee is Rainforest Alliance certified and they will be switching hot chocolate suppliers early in the new year. All of the milk in their hot drinks (including the little milker pots for tea) is organic.

Most stores now recycle their cooking oil into biodiesel, which is then used for their delivery lorries.

There are plans afoot to install wind turbines and solar panels onto many stores.

On a region-by-region basis, McDonald's uses local farmers for potatoes, for lettuce and other salad ingredients.

McDonald's is the largest seller of fresh, pre-packaged fruit in the UK.

All of these things apply to the McDonald's UK only; a very different company from McDonald's, inc and the only McDonald's that Innocent are selling product to.

There's an old proverb that I'm sure you're all aware of - if you're not part of the solution, you're part of the problem. I don't think that's entirely true, but I think a lot of you are acting like McDonald's customers shouldn't be allowed to buy fresh fruit drinks... and that ain't a solution.

You don't deserve the name 'Innocent' any more. The only good thing to come of this is that I've discovered how nice P&J smoothies are. I won't buy another not-so-Innocent smoothie.

surely innocent are just making something not so good a little bit less not so good (being tactful here (: )?
who knows..maybe a little bit of innocence will rub off on mcds? ;)

althoug mcdonalds are a nasty company, i believe they are making some small changes for they better. after all stocking smoothies in one corporate giant like mcdonalds is ethically not that much worse than stocking in tesco, a company that forces small business out, buys up huge amounts of land so that competition is eliminated and varios other odious practices (the amount of fat and other nasty things that go into their pre-packed sandwiches and ready meals are no worse that what goes into a big mac)

phew...what a debate! Having just attended the AGM (lovely day), I feel compelled to add my strong feelings about this discussion:

I can tell all you doubters out there that this move is most certainly not a bid by innocent to compromise their values by using the advertising of a giant company. They put tremendous value on making a difference by doing small things. They are still independant and just want to try and allow a wider range of people access to their product. Yes, they really are that nice!

At the end of the day they are a buisness, they sell smoothies in Tesco, Starbucks, Pret etc- all big companies who probably don't echo all the great principles that innocent maintain.

I feel that those people who detest this inniative are being very elitist. Not wanting their favourite product to be shared by the "sort of people who eat at McD's". I wonder how many of these people drink at starbucks, or shop at Tesco?

I agree that it would be foolish for devoted customers of McD's to think that a small smoothie is going to right the nutritional wrongs of a burger and chips, but what I'm thinking about here are the children who have no control over the food they put into their bodies.

I've worked in several schools where these pale, ill looking little kids eat little more than bread and potato, chocolate and fizzys...so if once a week they happen to have a little bit of goodness in their system, then it has to be a good thing.

People should stop being precious and selfish.

Well said, Lucy.

Thanks! :)

If I read the ingredients correctly from another site these smoothies sound wholey unhealthy - with maltodextrin, sugar, gelatin, emulsifiers, added flavor, etc. So what is the truth? It doesn't sound like pure fruit when there are 8 ingredients listed before a strawberry? Is this McD fault or innocents?

The comments to this entry are closed.

subscribe to this blog's feed


youtube
our YouTube channel

flickr
innocent big knit 2010
2008/2009/2010 AGM
veg pot veg art
2008 village fete

our other blogs
innocent in Sweden blog*
innocent in Ireland blog
innocent in Denmark blog*
our Big Knit 'knitter-natter' blog
our innocent village fete blog
*contains foreign language & open sandwiches

monthly archive
2011
january |  february |  march |  april |  may |  june |  july |  august |  september |  october |  november | 
2010
december |  november |  october |  september |  august |  july |  june |  may |  april |  march |  february |  january | 
2009
december |  november |  october |  september |  august |  july |  june |  may |  april |  march |  february |  january | 
2008
december |  november |  october |  september |  august |  july |  june |  may |  april |  march |  february |  january | 
2007
december |  november |  october |  september |  august |  july |  june |  may |  april |  march |  february |  january | 
2006
december |  november |  october |  september |  august |  july |  june | 



powered by typepad