Fighting fires with a non-existent burgers

Heatwaves and historic droughts are causing record devastation across Europe and the world, and wildfires have not been avoided in Slovenia. Many organisations have launched various charity programmes to help those affected – and McDonalds is no exception. 

With fires in Spain devastating nearly 250,000 hectares of land this year, McDonald’s Spain has decided to step outside the box and start selling a “non-existent burger” instead of the traditional “glass jar at the counter” collection of donations. When fires sweep through farmland, the entire harvest is lost, so the empty black packaging of the burger represents the crops that were destroyed in the fires and the farms that lost income as a result. To help farmers, Spain’s Mc’Donalds has created La hamburguesa que no pudo ser – the hamburger that can’t be. 

Mc’Donalds has pledged to pay for some of the burnt produce from its suppliers and is inviting its customers to help by adding a non-existent burger to their regular order for €1.

At the same time, it is not the first such move. Spain’s Mc’Donalds has a programme called Proyecto Big Good, which is a good demonstration of how multinationals can use their market power and omnipresence to tackle real and immediate problems of local people. So they came to the farmers’ aid back in 2020, when they created the Big Good Burger to help more than 2 000 farmers in the country, the ones most affected by the pandemic. 

A good example, isn’t it?