A lifelong vegetarian who had never eaten meat before was left crying and vomiting after being served a McDonald’s chicken burger instead of a veggie-friendly sandwich.
Charlotte Sunshine from Edinburgh, Scotland, bit into what she thought was the veggie deluxe burger, which comes with “red pesto veggie goujons with sandwich sauce and shredded lettuce in a sesame topped bun,” and is served in restaurants across the U.K.
The McDonald’s meal was ordered by her boyfriend, Calum Donaghy, via the food delivery service JustEat on June 8. But when she bit into the burger, Sunshine realized something was wrong.
On Twitter, Sunshine told her followers: “So I bit into the burger (labeled veggie deluxe on the box) and it wasn’t the veggie burger (pesto red pepper thing) and I’ve never eaten meat before and went into complete meltdown I’m f****** freaking out.
“I’ve just been on Google and I think it’s chicken and I feel so sick and I can’t stop crying and [I know] this sounds ridiculous to other people but please.”
She added that she: “Had to throw up and I’m petrified of vomiting and I’m in [eating disorder] recovery so I could not be more triggered [right now]. I still feel sick it won’t go away.”
The following day, Sunshine shared the response that she received from McDonald’s, which said: “It’s important that our customers enjoy our experience with us, and I’m sorry to hear that your order was not correct when it arrived [to] you.”
However, McDonald’s didn’t seem to address the specific incident in its apology and asked Sunshine to contact JustEat.
The incident sparked outrage on social media with fellow vegetarians, like one Twitter user who said: “Nah that’s not enough and it’s not on JustEat because they didn’t give you meat. @McDonaldsUK what are you going to do to rectify this situation [because] you made somebody ill with YOUR mistake?”
Another Twitter user said: “This is a shambles of a reply. Your order wasn’t just ‘wrong’ it was a complete breach of dietary requirements which could’ve risked your life! Also what can Just Eat even do? They just deliver—@McDonaldsUK this is a disgrace.”
Since Sunshine’s story gained attention online and in the U.K. media, Edinburgh Live reported that a McDonald’s spokesperson said: “We recognize that it is not acceptable to serve meat when a vegetarian product has been ordered, and we sincerely apologize to the customer for the mistake that was made in this instance.
“We have a number of procedures in place to avoid inaccurate orders, but in this case, these were not followed, and we are looking into why this occurred. Our Customer Services Team is currently in contact with the customer to help find a resolution.”