>Go Hoff wrote:
> >>From: "girl_mark_fire" <[EMAIL PROTECTED]>
> >>Subject: Re: Bubble washing.
> >>
> >>allegedly it's an animal fats thing. I haven't personally dealt with
> >>it because in the US we don't get fast food cooked in animal fats.
> >>anyone else (ie australians, eaters of fine tallow fried ... er...
> >>food), more info? Is 'normally used' animal fat harder to convert
> >>fully than vegoil?
> >
> >
> > I have been told that McDonalds fry oil is the same the world over and
> > contains 30% chicken fat.
>Your source was misinformed. In the US, McDonald's uses 100% veggie oil.
>In fact, when they switched over from a cottonseed oil/tallow blend to
>100% veggie oil in the early 90s, they worked extensively with chemists
>at IFF to make sure the unique flavor of McDonald's fries was not altered.

Wow, John you even spell "McDonald's" right!

The rest of it's not right though. (No, I'm not a vegetarian.)



10/01/03 . BY SANDRA GUY Business Reporter . Chicago Sun Times . USA  
McDonald's/Vegetarian Lawsuit 'Settlement' Controversy Continues  
1. Lawyer hits McD on suit settlement process [Chicago Sun Times]
2. McDonald's Attacks Vegetarian Leaders [www.vegsource.com]
3. Vegetarians Challenge McDonald's Payout  

1. Lawyer hits McD on suit settlement process
January 10, 2003
BY SANDRA GUY Business Reporter - Chicago Sun Times

McDonald's Corp.'s efforts to settle a lawsuit over its 
misrepresentation of animal-fat content in french fries and hash 
browns are running afoul of the very people the settlement was meant 
to appease. McDonald's agreed in June to donate $10 million to Hindu, 
vegetarian and other groups to settle lawsuits filed against the Oak 
Brook fast-food chain for mislabeling french fries and hash browns as 
vegetarian. The vegetable oil used to prepare the fries and hash 
browns was not pure but contained essence of beef for flavoring.

The list of more than 20 groups that McDonald's proposes to receive 
the $10 million has outraged the lawyer and the plaintiffs in the 
original suit, who contend the groups oppose Hindu, vegetarian and 
animal-rights values. McDonald's was first sued over the french fries 
by three vegetarians, including two Hindus who for religious reasons 
do not eat meat.

Harish Bharti, the Seattle attorney who filed the original lawsuit on 
May 1, 2001, does not oppose the $10 million settlement itself. But 
he accused McDonald's of initially trying to pressure him to keep the 
settlement secret from his clients and to keep the list secret from 
groups that asked if they were on it. He objected.

Bharti also said the other "copycat" lawyers who joined the lawsuit 
worked in league with McDonald's. The copycat lawyers have been fired 
by their clients, who are vegetarians and Hindus who filed lawsuits 
in Texas and Illinois, he said.

"I have been fighting [McDonald's and the other lawyers] to maintain 
my ethics," said Bharti, who described himself in a telephone 
interview as a Hindu Brahmin who is committed to following the 
religion's teachings. McDonald's Corp. issued a statement late 
Thursday calling the settlement process "a fair and open-door process 
directed by the court."

"All interested parties had an equal opportunity to participate in 
the discussions and deliberations, including Mr. Bharti," according 
to the statement. "He also was apprised of the proposed recipient 
list." "McDonald's is committed to following the court's direction," 
according to the statement. Bharti is asking Cook County Circuit 
Court Judge Richard Siebel to remove McDonald's and all lawyers, 
including himself, from the settlement process and to appoint an 
independent special master or group to decide which groups should 
receive the settlement money.

"No one should be rejected because they stood up against McDonald's," 
Bharti said. He said McDonald's has ignored his recommendations about 
groups that deserve money from the settlement.

Vegetarian and animal-rights groups also object to McDonald's list of 
recipient groups and researchers. Officials with People for the 
Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) are fighting a proposed grant to 
a researcher at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill who 
it says wants to use money to promote anti-vegetarian diets. Steve 
Zeisel, the researcher, wants to use his share of the settlement to 
study whether women on strict vegetarian diets get enough of the 
nutrient choline, which is abundant in eggs, during pregnancy, 
according to PETA.

"The money is supposed to be earmarked for vegetarian groups," said 
Hannah Schein, a research associate for Norfolk, Va.-based PETA. "He 
(Zeisel) doesn't represent a vegetarian group. If anything, he 
recommends that pregnant women not be vegetarian."

McDonald's originally responded to the lawsuits by saying it never 
claimed the french fries it sells in the United States are 
vegetarian. But McDonald's apologized for any confusion surrounding 
the use of beef flavoring.

McDonald's is supposed to distribute $6 million to vegetarian 
organizations, $2 million to Hindu or Sikh groups, and the remaining 
money to help better feed children and to promote understanding of 
Jewish kosher practices.

The next hearing in the case takes place Monday in Chicago.

2. McDonald's Attacks Vegetarian Leaders (in cahoots with copycat lawyers)
by Jeff Nelson
Monday, Jan. 6, 2003

LOS ANGELES -- Vegetarians sued McDonald's for not disclosing that 
their "vegetarian" French fries actually contained beef. In response, 
McDonald's apologized and agreed to make a $6 million donation to 
non-profit vegetarian organizations. At least that's what McDonald's 
said and agreed in writing it would do.

Now McDonald's has filed a brief asking the judge in the matter not 
to hold them to their promise, but to instead allow them to give the 
money to non-vegetarian and anti-vegetarian organizations -- and to 
"vegetarian organizations" whose nutritionists recommend meat, 
chicken, fish and shrimp.

And in response to the many beloved bestselling vegetarian authors, 
medical doctors and leaders who have petitioned the court not to 
permit McDonald's to subvert the settlement agreement, McDonald's -- 
along with the lawyers supposedly representing vegetarians -- attack 
these esteemed individuals, telling the judge they are all 
disgruntled "zealous radicals" motivated by "greed."

In our original article called Sleeping With the Enemy (sent out on 
the McLibel list earlier), VegSource previously covered this scandal 
in detail. In short, McDonald's -- with the support of the "copycat" 
plaintiff attorneys who were fired by their vegetarian clients -- is 
attempting to steer much of the settlement money they explicitly 
agreed would go to "vegetarian organizations . . . dedicated to the 
values of vegetarianism" -- instead to organizations which are 
hostile to vegetarianism.

The most recent developments show McDonald's and the copycat 
attorneys filing large briefs full of personal insults and 
name-calling against esteemed vegetarian leaders like John Robbins, 
Michael Klaper MD, John McDougall MD, T. Colin Campbell PhD, Alex 
Hershaft PhD, Mark Epstein, Joanne Stepaniak, Jack Norris, Matt Ball, 
Gene and Lorri Bauston, Stanley Sapon PhD and many others.

First McDonald's lied by saying their fries contained no beef, now 
they're trying to betray vegetarians a second time, by reneging on 
their promise to donate money to vegetarian groups. They argue to the 
court they should be able to give this money instead to 
non-vegetarian and even anti-vegetarian organizations, so long as 
those organizations merely promise to do "vegetarian research" with 
the money.

The only support in the vegetarian community that McDonald's and the 
copycat lawyers were able to present to the court comes from the 
Vegetarian Resource Group (VRG). VRG submitted the only declaration 
in support of the proposal, even endorsing the money earmarked to go 
to the anti-vegetarian animal researcher at University of North 
Carolina -- a researcher who seeks to prove his personal hypothesis 
that the vegan diet is very unsafe for pregnant women, who need to 
eat eggs when pregnant in order to get sufficient choline. (This is 
the same animal researcher who usually does research supported by the 
Egg Board -- who VRG supports.) If the McDonald's proposal is 
approved, VRG stands to receive $1.4 million from it.

Elie Wiesel is often quoted as saying, "Take sides, neutrality helps 
the oppressor, never the victim." Another oft' repeated line is: 
"Silence is consent." Unfortunately, the North American Vegetarian 
Society (NAVS) -- which stands to receive $1 million if this corrupt 
McDonald's allocation goes through -- decided to remain silent and 
not use their special position in the matter to raise questions, or 
to educate the judge to help prevent a miscarriage of justice. NAVS 
is well aware that anti-vegetarian groups will benefit if this 
proposal goes through. I guess for some it's easier to look the other 
way when vegetarianism is getting mugged -- especially when the 
mugger is giving you a share.

It's one thing to claim to be an "ethical" vegetarian; but actions 
speak far louder than words. Let us hope that McDonald's and VRG -- 
as well as NAVS and any other organization with special position 
which chose silence over ethics -- do not succeed in deceiving the 
judge into approving this corrupt proposal.

3. Vegetarians Challenge McDonald's Payout
Fri Jan 10,11:38 AM ET
By RICHARD GIBSON, Dow Jones Newswires

DES MOINES, Iowa - Some vegetarians, including the lead lawyer in the 
matter, are challenging how McDonald's Corp. will distribute $10 
million to settle the mislabeling case involving beef-flavored french 

An Illinois Circuit Court judge in Chicago is to hear arguments next 
Monday on who should receive the money and why.

The Seattle attorney who brought the original lawsuit against the 
fast-food giant, Harish Bharti, said he will object to the company's 
list of proposed recipients in part because the selection process had 
been "rigged," favoring those who either don't represent the majority 
of vegetarians or who are sympathetic to McDonald's.

"I am deeply concerned that the funds not be allocated to a 
relatively small number of interest groups determined by ... lawyers 
with personal preferences or prejudices unrelated to the actual needs 
and concerns of the class members," Bharti said in a brief.

Bharti wants the court to appoint an impartial third party to draw up 
a new recipients' list.

Objections to the settlement distribution also have been filed by the 
operator of a Web site for vegetarians, www.VegSource.com. Jeffrey A. 
Nelson contends some would-be recipients are "in fact 

Some, Nelson said, had publicly opposed bringing a class-action 
lawsuit against McDonald's for representing its fries and hash browns 
as being vegetarian when they were, in fact, cooked in beef-flavored 

To settle the matter, McDonald's, based in Oak Brook, Ill., issued an 
apology and agreed to pay $10 million - 60 percent to vegetarian 
groups, 20 percent to Hindu and/or Sikh organizations, 10 percent to 
children's nutrition and hunger relief efforts and 10 percent to 
those promoting the understanding of Kosher foods and dietary 

Besides various vegetarian groups, three universities - Tufts, Loma 
Linda in California and the University of North Carolina at Chapel 
Hill - would divide $1.3 million, according to the list before the 

Responding to complaints over the choice of recipients, McDonald's 
filed a brief saying that some complaints are "substantive but many 
... fall into the category of petty gripes or sour grapes over not 
receiving funds ... When distributing a large sum of money, it is 
impossible to please every potential grant recipient or interested 
party," the company said.

Of Nelson's complaint, McDonald's said in the brief that it "reflects 
intramural squabbling within the vegetarian community about tactics 
for achieving vegetarian aims."  

The McLibel Trial

The McLibel Trial is the infamous British court case between 
McDonald's and a postman & a gardener from London (Helen Steel and 
Dave Morris). It ran for two and a half years and became the longest 
ever English trial. The Judge delivered his verdict in June 1997.

The verdict was devastating for McDonald's. The judge ruled that they 
'exploit children' with their advertising, produce 'misleading' 
advertising, are 'culpably responsible' for cruelty to animals, are 
'antipathetic' to unionisation and pay their workers low wages. But 
Helen and Dave failed to prove all the points and so the Judge ruled 
that they HAD libelled McDonald's and should pay 60,000 pounds 
damages. They refused and McDonald's knew better than to pursue it. 
In March 1999 the Court of Appeal made further rulings against 
McDonald's in relation to heart disease and employment.

As a result of the court case, the Anti-McDonald's campaign 
mushroomed, the press coverage increased exponentially, this website 
was born and a 60-minute documentary was produced.

The legal controversy continues. The McLibel 2 have taken the British 
Government to the European Court of Human Rights to defend the 
public's right to criticise multinationals, claiming UK libel laws 
are oppressive and unfair.

Read the whole story here.

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