In an attempt to wow fair-goers with a new, entertaining menu item, the Minnesota State Fair found itself in a jam.
The fair is known for experimenting with new, over-the-top foods, and this year they decided to introduce injectable donuts accompanied by three plastic syringes used to insert various fillings — Bavarian cream, chocolate custard and Minnesota lingonberry jam — into the treat.
They hoped it would give people a more hands-on dessert experience, Today reported.
The dessert was presented as The Wingwalker Donut Flight by a vendor called The Hangar, and would have been available August 22 through early September. However, once the dessert was announced it saw a flood of backlash due to the impact it would have on the environment, and the fair decided to remove it from the menu.
Jason Holtz, a Minneapolis resident, even started an online petition to protest the dessert before the state fair took action.
“The waste generated (three syringes times thousands and thousands of orders) over the 10 day fair run is absurd,” Holtz wrote in his petition page. “Filled donut holes sound like a fine idea. Fill them for us from a big dispenser that’s not going to last centuries in the ocean or landfill.”
He, as well as others, also had concerns about the message these donuts could convey about the use of the syringes.
“In addition, the image conveyed by syringes being cool and containing treats, not to mention being littered around on the ground is not one we should be wanting to promote,” Holtz also wrote in his petition.
In a statement following the backlash, the Minnesota State Fair said they recognized their mistake and decided to pull the dessert item, replacing it with donuts fair-goers will be able to “dunk” in the fillings instead.
“We understand the impact food packaging has on the environment, and The Hangar, along with the fair, has decided that plastic syringes will not be used as part of the Wingwalker Donut Flight,” a spokesperson for the Minnesota State Fair said in a statement that was shared online.
They even took it a step further by replacing all of their food containers with compostable products and opted for wood utensils instead of plastic.
Holtz updated his petition, elated over the state fairs actions and telling people its important to speak up.
“Proof that speaking up works,” he wrote. “When you see something wrong, say something.”
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