Did McDonald's change its food wrappers to blue and white, the colors of the Israeli flag, in support of Israel during the 2023 Hamas-Israel conflict? No, that's not true: The fast food chain told Lead Stories that the wrappers were not intended to make a political statement. They come in a variety of colors, not just blue and white, and have been used for years in some restaurants for special orders, limited-edition products and to fill temporary shortages.
The claim appeared in a post on Instagram (archived here) on October 19, 2023. The post featured a video of an unseen woman asking McDonald's employees about the blue-and-white packaging for a sandwich. The woman said: "This is in support of Israel." The post was later updated to read:
PLEASE SHARE** EDIT***** I have gotten some messages that this is old packaging from previous months ago. Regardless of when this packaging was made, it is clear WHY it was made & designed the way it was with those distinctive colors. And bringing it back out this particular week is definitely in bad taste. We all know most companies support Israel IDF, there's really no way around it. But to have it thrown in your face like that from a big company that should be 'inclusive' . The point of this is, it triggered me, it made me feel bad and hurt and I wanted to speak up about it. And that's what I did.!
This is what the post looked on Instagram at the time of writing:
(Source: Instagram screenshot taken on Fri Oct 27 11:37:00 2023 UTC)
Lead Stories contacted McDonald's to ask about the post's claims. In an email dated October 27, 2023, the company said that its packaging was not meant to make any kind of political statement. The wrapper in the video is an example of a generic wrapper that has been used for years in some restaurants for special orders, limited-edition products and to fill temporary shortages, according to the firm. The wrappers come in various colors; not just blue and white, it added.
Other Lead Stories fact checks of claims related to the 2023 Hamas-Israel conflict can be read here.