Coronavirus: KFC lockdown litter in Beccles angers thousands

  • Published
KFC box on roadsideImage source, Harry Read
Image caption,
The litter appeared just days after the nearest branch of KFC reopened

Thousands of people have reacted angrily to a photograph of a discarded KFC takeaway box taken days after a branch reopened.

Nature photographer Harry Read, 23, saw the litter on a grass verge near Beccles, Suffolk, on Friday.

He was "blown away" when his image of the empty box drew more than 40,000 reactions and 6,000 comments online.

KFC, which has resumed drive-thru service at some outlets, said it encouraged customers to bin litter.

Mr Read, whose nearest branch had reopened two days earlier, said the "pristine" container still had remnants of food in it.

"I saw the box, and thought 'surely not'," he said.

"But it was, so someone must have thrown it from their car very recently."

He stopped his car, snapped a photo and took the cardboard home to recycle before penning his viral post.

'Don't be a tosser'

In a Facebook post, he wrote: "Hear me out, I know it's just a KFC box, but it represents something bigger…"

"As restrictions begin to ease and freedom returns, why default to habits like this?"

"Don't be a tosser," he added, referring to a slogan used in anti-litter campaigns.

Image source, Harry Read
Image caption,
Harry Read usually runs wildlife photography trips when he isn't spotting litter by the roadside

Although a few commenters called him a "snowflake" and a "hippy", he said "at least 95%" agreed his concerns were "spot on".

"People are furious about these bad habits," he said.

"Moving out of this lockdown, as restrictions ease, surely there's no better time to consider what you are doing and not default to lazy habits that harm the environment."

A spokesman for KFC said staff carried out regular litter patrols near restaurants and customers were encouraged to take litter home or "put it in the bin where possible".

"With great fried chicken, comes great responsibility," they added.

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