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McDonald’s not amused by royal quip

LOS ANGELES - Memo from McDonald’s Corp. to the Prince of Wales: We are not amused. McDonald’s said Wednesday it was disappointed by Prince Charles’
statement that the hamburger chain should be banned, adding that the heir to the British throne was unfamiliar with its recent efforts to introduce healthier fare.

Earlier this week, Prince Charles suggested during a visit to the Imperial College London Diabetes Centre in Abu Dhabi that McDonald’s, often criticized over its high-fat menu choices, should be banned.

“Have you got anywhere with McDonald’s? Have you tried getting it banned? That’s the key,” the prince said to a nutritionist at the center.

“The comment made by the Prince of Wales appears to be an off-the-cuff remark that, in our opinion, does not reflect either our menu or where we are at as a business,” Nick Hindle, a spokesman for McDonald’s UK business, said in an e-mailed statement.

A spokesman for Prince Charles said “he was keen to emphasise the need for children to enjoy the widest variety of food and not to eat any particular sort of food to excess.”

Prince Charles has long been an advocate of organic food, running an organic farm on his home estate. Late last year, he published a cookbook in which he aimed to rebel against what he called the “soulless, mass-produced food that had come to dominate the modern diet.”

But McDonald’s said the future king was “clearly unaware of some of the moves we have made over time to improve choice and variety on our menu ... including the introduction of fruit, carrot sticks, salads and organic milk.”

The hamburger chain added that it has “made great progress in support of sustainable agriculture.”