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Just about to record an interview with the boss of

Eddie Mair | 12:02 UK time, Tuesday, 8 May 2007

Innocent - the people who make smoothies. Some of their fans are very upset at the company's decision to hook up with McDonalds. The link takes you to the company's blog where as you'll read, some customers are far from happy. To Burger or Not to burger is the bit you need.

We'll try to post the full interview here shortly.


  1. At 12:20 PM on 08 May 2007, The Stainless Steel Cat wrote:

    I'm quite satisfied with the fact that although I've heard the word "smoothie" with increasing frequency recently, I have no idea what one is...

    ...unless of course Eddie's going to be talking to Leslie Phillips...


  2. At 12:23 PM on 08 May 2007, Big Sister wrote:

    I'm sure their smoothies are far healthier than a quadlatte.

  3. At 12:35 PM on 08 May 2007, Carl wrote:

    Have you seen the price of those drinks?! Eat the whole fruit it's better for you, or buy a 4.99 juicer from Tesco. Trade names are becoming a big thing on the PM blog, the PM office must be stacked full of 'blagged' freebie goods. Please send some to me!!! (after you've had first pick of course). If you could give Herta Frankfurters a mention on the show tonight.

  4. At 12:56 PM on 08 May 2007, Fifi wrote:

    To what lengths will Maccers not go in order to disguise the fact that they're selling junk food?

    Promoting the omega 3 in fried fish?
    The vitamin C in French fries?
    You'll die if you don't eat enough salt?

    I'm thinking 'oxygen of publicity' here....


  5. At 01:04 PM on 08 May 2007, Perky wrote:

    Hmmm. I've had a look at the Innocent blog, and I'm happy to admit that I put their smoothie cartons in my kids' lunchboxes (and recycle the cardboard when they come home). I appreciate Innocent's point about giving kids the healthy drink option at McDs but let's face it - the kids who choose fizz will probably still choose fizz - only those who choose milk may just choose a smoothie instead.

    What worries me is that it will encourage some people to go to McDs more often because they think they're being healthy. Until one smoothie neutralises all the rubbish in a McD's meal, it's not going to make any difference.

    I'll stick with Innocent for now because I like their lunchbox product, but I certainly won't be going to McDs just because you can get a smoothie with your heart attack.

  6. At 01:10 PM on 08 May 2007, Roberto Carlos Alvarez-Galloso,CPUR wrote:

    Mc Donalds reminds me of a special documentary in MSNBC. The reproter had to eat breakfast, lunch, and dinner at Mc Donalds for one month. He lasted fifteen days and lost a lot of water and electrolytes.

  7. At 01:12 PM on 08 May 2007, Simon Worrall wrote:

    Herta Frankfurters? Wasn't she a character in 'Cabaret'?

    RE: the smoothie thing. It's all just double standards. Hit McDonalds for their crap food. Hit them for serving something good. Sod it, it's McDonalds, hit them anyway! They're responsible for globalisation and childhood obesity. Nothing to do with parents who let their kids eat the stuff because it keeps them quiet, then let them collapse in front of the TV rather than exercise. Blame it all on someone else.

    What's the complaint? People bitch about the likes of Mcwotsit being lousy quality, junk food, targetted at kids, etc. When they put something good on the menu the manufacturer of the item in question gets it in the neck. Huh?

    I guess that it doesn't suit the whiners if McDo sell something good. It rubs some of the tarnish off their image and leaves one less stick to beat them with. They would rather that McDo was just an out-and-out target.

    I guess the same people still buy their Green & Blacks Organic Chocolate, despite it now being owned by Cadbury, most of whose products can't even be called chocolate under EU-insanity rules because the cocoa content is so low.


  8. At 01:20 PM on 08 May 2007, witchiwoman wrote:

    Fifi -
    Good point; seems to be having a slightly detrimental effect on Innocent though. Having said that maybe it will introduce kids to something they won't otherwise try and then parents can get the juicer (as suggested by Carl) and go form there. If they can enter into this without compromising their (projected) shiney-happy-green-and-groovy operating practices (?) then good for them.

  9. At 01:21 PM on 08 May 2007, Humph wrote:

    That would be the oxygen in those small holes in their baps, would it Fifi? ;-).


  10. At 01:23 PM on 08 May 2007, DI Wyman wrote:

    ......can't stand junk food...I always go for that good ol' Kentucky Fried Chicken....

  11. At 01:34 PM on 08 May 2007, Big Sister wrote:

    SimonW/Carl: Wasn't Herta Frank N Furter's wife?

  12. At 01:37 PM on 08 May 2007, witchiwoman wrote:

    SiW - cadburys? never knew that; choccy does nothing for me, thats the provison of the OH but seeing as I'm the one who buys it....thanks!

  13. At 02:06 PM on 08 May 2007, Simon Worrall wrote:

    A woman who doesn't need to be pacified with constant gifts of chocolate? Where have you been all my life! (OH = Other Half ? Right?).

    Personally I'm a fan of Lindt 85% stuff. Amazing flavour. Tried the 99% but was too bitter, even for me.

    Yeah, G&B's made such a big deal about their organic street-cred, then sold to Cadbury.

    And the Roddicks sold Body Shop to L'Oreal.

    And Pret-a-manger is a third owned by the aforementioned McDo.

    The list of small-scale companies with impeccable eco-credibility being sold to big business recently is getting longer all the time.

    No surprise really. The businesses have matured and have great brand-name value. The owners have also matured and want a retirement package. The obvious thing to do is sell the big valuable asset.

    I have to add here, Innocent haven't sold out. They're just trying a thing in one region with McDo to see how it goes.

    DI W;
    Not the maximum-sized Stuffed-Crust all-the-toppings with two side dishes from Pizza Hut then? Part-timer.

    Are you lurking anywhere Sir? Check out Farming Today from this morning (Tuesday). All about small-scale farming (box sales schemes, etc.) being a growth area in Scotland right now and how it's being encouraged.

    And further; Listen to 'Hippies' on R4 tomorrow at 11:00 hrs. All about 'Tipi Valley' in Wales and "living lightly on the land" as a model for human existence. Right up your street by the sound of it?


  14. At 02:11 PM on 08 May 2007, Andy bird wrote:

    Poor MacDonalds .. will they ever be able to do enough to stop people moaning at them? It has been perfectly possible to eat nutritious food at McDs for a while now - you just have to pick the right stuff off the menu. The fact that you can easily buy free range egg in the UK is mainly due to McDs refusing to buy anything else and that tipped the balance. Could have taken years longer if they had not gone down that route.
    We only go there once in a while and love it. Will be nice to be able to get a smoothie and it might even bring the extortionate price of an Innocent smoothie down to a reasonable level.

  15. At 02:13 PM on 08 May 2007, Perky wrote:

    Si (7) - I know exactly where you're coming from as a parent that's taking responsibility for what my kids are eating and doing in their spare time.

    It will be interesting to see what effect, if any, selling Innocent smoothies will have on McDonalds and Innocent. I wouldn't abandon a brand for selling healthy products in McDonalds, but I know that a lot of Innocent customers were originally attracted by its ethical values and are now wondering whether those sit cosily with those of a fast-food giant.

    It's an interesting debate and, as I can't listen to the unedited interview at work, I'll be looking forward to hearing it on the programme tonight.

  16. At 02:21 PM on 08 May 2007, DI Wyman wrote:

    Si, no, all that tomatoe , peppers, mucshroom is a bit too close to having a 5-a-day diet. i'm a stick with the spicy coated deep fried white meat, fries and fizzy sort of dude

  17. At 02:33 PM on 08 May 2007, witchiwoman wrote:

    Si - its true! But a well made bowl of porridge with cinnamon and raisins and I'm anyones! :)

  18. At 02:38 PM on 08 May 2007, DI Wyman wrote:

    .....I see NHS 5-a-day guide lines say that okra can be one of the portions.

    But the guy at Tescos fish counter says that there isn't much demand for Killer whale so they don't stock it. Will try Morrisons and let you know how i get on......

  19. At 03:38 PM on 08 May 2007, DI Wyman wrote:

    ....no Morrisons don't either, offered me something called calamari for sick squid a kilo, will try Aldi....

  20. At 03:39 PM on 08 May 2007, Adrie van der Luijt (Mr.) wrote:

    The same criticisms hit Pret when they "sold out" to McDonalds (in fact, it was 20% or so of their shares in return for a massive distribution network to sell more sandwiches).

    Which begs the question: why didn't Innocent announce a deal with Pret instead?

  21. At 03:44 PM on 08 May 2007, Simon Worrall wrote:

    Adrie (Mr.);
    Not certain, but I believe that Innocent already sell through Pret. If that has been successful then it would have raised the interest of McDo, leading to this current trial.

    I had read elsewhere that it was one-third, not 20%, but wouldn't put money on that. Doesn't make a big difference to us ordinary mortals anyway.


  22. At 04:03 PM on 08 May 2007, Frances O wrote:

    I'd love to drink 'innocent', but it's too expensive.

    Does Te$c0 really stock a juicer for such a low price? Hmm. A real one that filters out the lumpy bits?

  23. At 05:57 PM on 08 May 2007, Ed Iglehart wrote:


    Thanks for the pointers. Farming today is an occasional listen anyway, but not this morning. I've known Lindsay Cannon since she was a lass. She's from a farm five miles from here.

    Frances, the lumpy bits are the best. Yum.

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