Urge Yoplait to Change Yogurt Container Design to Protect Wildlife

Target: Becky O’Grady, President of Yoplait USA

Goal: Change the design of yogurt containers in order to save wildlife from injury and death.

Discarded cups of Yoplait yogurt present a risk of danger to wildlife, including skunks, squirrels, opossums, raccoons, and other scavenging animals attracted to the residual yogurt in the cups. Wild animals get their snouts or heads stuck in the narrow opening of the container. Without intervention, these animals are deprived of air and are unable to see, drink, nor eat while the containers are stuck on their faces. Animals wandering blindly with their faces stuck in yogurt cups are in danger of being hit by cars, drowning in pools of water, or attacked by predators if they do not suffocate first.

Yoplait has failed to adequately change the design of their containers in the past. The company responded to requests from wildlife conservationists to change their packaging by printing a very small warning that reads “Protect Wildlife; Crush Cup Before Disposal.” Yoplait has kept the tapered shape with a small opening and lip that catches on the fur of animals, preventing them from getting their heads out. Skunks have very short arms and cannot pull the container off of their heads with their paws even if they are not caught tightly.

By refusing the change the design of their yogurt containers, Yoplait fails to be responsible for their packaging’s deadliness to wildlife. Instead, the company is leaving it up to the consumer to read the fine print and destroy the cups before they recycle them. Yoplait’s actions are insufficient to resolve this issue that is important to many concerned consumers. Small mammals such as skunks are extremely beneficial to have in urban settings because they eat rodents, insects, snails, and leaf litter. Many consumers would prefer to not have valuable wildlife die awful deaths from our yogurt’s packaging.

Please sign this petition to demand that Yoplait stop killing wildlife with its dangerous cup design and pledge to boycott the brand until the packaging changes.

PETITION LETTER:

Dear Becky O’Grady, President of Yoplait USA

Your company has been well aware of reports from park rangers and wildlife conservation groups bringing forward the issue of small foraging animals becoming stuck in discarded Yoplait yogurt containers and unable to get them off of their heads or snouts. In order to be consistent with its claims of meeting customer satisfaction and willingness to improve its famous product, Yoplait must change the design of its yogurt containers.

The opening of yogurt containers produced by Yoplait are very small and wildlife continues to become trapped in them. Animals including skunks, raccoons, squirrels, opossums, and other wildlife attracted to the leftover yogurt get their faces stuck by the cups. Many of these animals have short arms and are unable to get the tapered container off of their snouts once their fur is trapped by the lip of the cup’s opening. Once trapped by the containers, the animals die terrible deaths from not being able to see cars, pools of water, or predators, and from suffocating, becoming dehydrated, or starving to death.

Printing a small warning on the yogurt cups is insufficient to protect wildlife. Please take responsible action by changing the design of your containers. By changing the design of your yogurt cups, you can show consumers that you truly care about their input and also that you compassionately support humane coexistence with wildlife. I pledge to boycott Yoplait yogurt until its containers are safe for wildlife.

Sincerely,

[Your Name Here]

Photo credit: mklitt via Flickr

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11 Comments

  1. Tamara Heikalo says:

    I read a story about someone contacting a ranger on a wildlife preserve about an animal with a glass jar stuck on its head and being told that they could not interfere with the troubles of the wildlife. This was outrageous because the cause of the trouble is entirely human-made. The animal was attended to, fortunately, by another source, but imagine if this had not been available!

  2. carol c brown says:

    Boycott them..I won’t be buying their yogurt ever again.

  3. J Davidson says:

    These containers must be stopped. Furthermore, all containers and garbage also must be disposed of properly and not tossed anywhere at will. Also, plastics are to be recycled and not to litter our country so disrespectfully.

  4. Michelle Walker says:

    I don’t eat anything they make anyway but if I did, I’d stop until they listened. Irresponsible, greedy profiteers, don’t listen to petitions unless it also threatens their wallets. Oh and litterers you’re a massive selfish part of this problem too.

  5. Robert Kolbe says:

    Glad to see this. Some years ago I found a dead skunk with its head in a container. I directly contacted Yoplait and got a non-response; along the lines of “we have determined that the minor modification on the bottom of the cup is sufficient.” — Not for the dead skunk I found who must have died a horrible death. again, glad to see this. Will sign. Robert Kolbe

  6. Helene Beck says:

    This is what Yoplait said when I approached them re. this issue:
    “Dear Ms. Beck:

    Thank you for contacting us about the Yoplait container.

    Yoplait also wants to protect and preserve wildlife – and we have supported efforts to help educate consumers about responsible disposal of food packaging.

    The “Don′t Trash Wildlife” message is to:

    Rinse and Recycle.
    Rinse all recyclable glass and plastic containers to remove any food remnants or odors. Even containers you′re going to throw away should be thoroughly rinsed before disposal to avoid attracting wildlife to your trash.

    Cut and Crush.
    Plastic containers should be cut and/or crushed before you put them in your garbage or recycling bin.

    Close and Cover.
    Make sure plastic food wrap is rinsed and contained inside a closed garage bag. Never throw plastic packaging in open trashcans. Put garbage out for collection in plastic or metal trash containers with secure covers.

    We hope you will continue to use and enjoy our products.

    Sincerely,

    xxxxx
    Consumer Services”

  7. This is so bizarre because I actually saved a skunk from exactly that. The poor thing had its head stuck in yogurt container and was wandering into the roadway. I didn’t want to at first fearing being sprayed or worse, bitten. My friend
    shamed me into helping the creature, which I did by throwing a blanket over it then I was able to remove the container. It actually seemed grateful.

  8. Marianne Pena says:

    I don’t like the style of the containers anyway. They should have changed the style as soon as this was made known to them. I like the lady’s comment about crushing them.

  9. Debra laughlin says:

    Change the container. I may purchase after u do but until then NO WAY

  10. I was unaware of this until I saw it on the news tonight. I will no longer be buying Yoplait. They really need to do something about this. They might have to spend a little money but it’s well worth saving the lives of countless animals!

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