MUNICH – Germany's consumer-protection agency has ended its food-education partnership with McDonald's Corp., according to news reports. The move follows protests by consumer groups that believe the US chain, or any corporate interests, should not be involved in giving nutrition advice in German schools.

Roughly 37,000 individuals participated in an e-mail protest launched by Food Watch, a consumer advocacy group, after news emerged a year ago of McDonald's and other business participation in the Alliance for Consumer Education program. The group argued that children should learn about healthy eating and fair trade — but not from corporate interests.

A McDonald's spokesman is quoted as saying the US chain was invited to join the Alliance for Consumer Education.