MCDONALD'S CORPORATION | Annual report on lobbying activities at MCDONALD'S CORPORATION

50.31% votes in favour
AGM date
Previous AGM date
Proposal number
Resolution details
Company ticker
Resolution ask
Report on or disclose
ESG theme
  • Governance
ESG sub-theme
  • Lobbying / political engagement
Type of vote
Shareholder proposal
Filer type
Company sector
Consumer Discretionary
Company HQ country
United States
Resolved clause
RESOLVED, Company stockholders request the preparation of a report, updated annually, disclosing:
1.  Company policy and procedures governing lobbying, both direct and indirect, and grassroots lobbying communications.
2. Payments by the Company used for (a) direct or indirect lobbying or (b) grassroots lobbying communications, in each case including the amount of the payment and the recipient. 
3. Description of management’s decision-making process and the Board’s oversight for making payments described above.
For purposes of this proposal, a “grassroots lobbying communication” is a communication directed to the general public that (a) refers to specific legislation or regulation, (b) reflects a view on the legislation or regulation and (c) encourages the recipient of the communication to take action with respect to the legislation or regulation. “Indirect lobbying” is lobbying engaged in by a trade association or other organization of which the Company is a member. 
Both “direct and indirect lobbying” and “grassroots lobbying communications” include efforts at the local, state and federal levels.  
The report shall be presented to the Governance Committee and posted on the Company website.   
Whereas clause
WHEREAS, we believe in full disclosure of lobbying activities and expenditures of McDonald’s Corporation (“Company”) to assess whether the Company lobbying is consistent with its expressed goals and stockholder interests. 
Supporting statement
 Supporting Statement  
McDonald’s does not currently report on the full extent of its lobbying efforts. We do know that McDonald’s spent $21,330,000 from 2012-2022 on federal lobbying. The company spent $5,748,941 in California, largely to oppose AB 257 in 2022, a state law that creates a council to set minimum standards on working conditions, and that industry groups now seek to overturn. The company also spent $100,805 in lobbying activities in 2021 for New York City alone.  
Beyond that, there is not a complete picture of the world’s largest fast food restaurant’s lobbying activities.   

State level lobbying disclosures are uneven, incomplete or absent. For example, in Florida McDonald’s spent anywhere between $1-$9,999 on lobbying for each of Q1-Q3 in 2022, a figure that does not provide investors with meaningful information. 

McDonald’s does not disclose donations to third party groups that spend millions on lobbying and often undisclosed grassroots activity; these groups may be spending “at least double what’s publicly reported.”1     
While McDonald’s discloses a list of trade association memberships, it does not disclose indirect lobbying expenditures through groups like the International Franchise Association, Business Roundtable, or the National Restaurant Association (NRA), all of which McDonald’s is a member. In 2022, the NRA spent $2,110,000 and previously lobbied Congress against paid sick leave during the Covid-19 pandemic.        
 McDonald’s states that the “backbone of our Brand is, and always has been, a commitment to a core set of values,” that includes integrity and community.2 Complete reporting would shed light on how that commitment operates in practice. 

How other organisations have declared their voting intentions

Organisation name Declared voting intentions Rationale
Anima Sgr For Given the current level of disclosure of the company’s lobbying activities, greater disclosure of the company's state level lobbying, indirect lobbying-related expenditures and board oversight mechanisms would help shareholders better assess the risks and benefits associated with the company's participation in the public policy process.
Rothschild & co Asset Management For

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