Parrot cookie controversy fixes a deadly feature in ‘Minecraft’

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Image: Mojang

If you give a parrot a chocolate chip cookie in Minecraft, it will become your friend. If you give a parrot a chocolate chip cookie in real life, it could die.

A Redditor pointed this out on the Minecraft subreddit this week and the post blew up, garnering over 37,000 upvotes within a few days, and catching the attention of Minecraft’s developer Mojang. Mojang is going to patch Minecraft so players will have to use a different, less poisonous food to tame and breed the colorful jungle birds, Motherbaord reported.

Minecraft is one of the most popular video games in the world, especially among kids. There’s a possibility that some young players who don’t know any better could take what they see in Minecraft and try it in real life with potentially deadly consequences.

Reddit user 1jl noted this in their popular Reddit post, "Dear Mojang. Please remove feeding chocolate to birds to make them breed. Millions of kids will play this game. You picked the one food in the game that will kill them to make them breed and tame them":

I get that you want to give chocolate chip cookies a use in the game, but literally millions of kids will play this game and chocolate and pet parrots are common enough that this will cause a problem. There is no question about that. You can’t tell me some 6 year old is going to play Minecraft and then try to feed their Mom’s 45 year old Macaw chocolate chips or a chocolate chip cookies.

Minecraft’s lead creative designer Jens Bergensten told Motherboard that the possibility of negatively influencing kids’ behavior is not something the team wants to do, so they’ll be changing the parrot/cookie relationship before the next big update.

"If Minecraft has any effect on children’s behavior, we want it to be a positive one, so we’ll change the item used to breed parrots before the 1.12 update is released," Bergensten told Motherboard. "Our reasoning for originally using cookies was twofold; it gave cookies a reason to exist within Minecraft, and it was a subtle reference to the Nirvana song ‘Polly.’ However, we didn’t consider what the chocolate ingredient would mean to real life parrots!"

Mojang did not immediately respond to our request for comment.