A 6-year-old Happy Meal from McDonald’s may hold the key to aging, or not! A woman in Alaska posted a picture of a 6-year-old Happy Meal online and it doesn’t have any signs of aging, except maybe the color has faded a bit.
According to MSN News on February 9, the Happy Meal was stored in the back cabinet of a doctor’s office as an experiment. The four McNuggets and French fries show no signs of mold or deterioration, according to Jennifer Lovdahl, who posted the picture of the 6-year-old Happy Meal to Facebook that has gone viral.
Lovdahl had a mission for keeping that Happy Meal stored for all that time and that mission was to show their patients just how “unhealthy this food is. Especially for growing children.” She was amazed that the food never changed form and the smell coming from the old food was that of the cardboard it was stored in.
While this is fascinating at best, according to Snopes, “the phenomenon of non-decomposing fast food isn’t so straightforward.” Most of these “experiments” do not list the conditions under which the McDonald’s food is stored.
The same claim that was made about this Happy Meal from Alaska was made about several McDonald’s burgers through the years – they don’t rot or age. After all the burger claims, Kenji Lopez-Alt, a writer from Serious Eats, did his own experiment. Lopez-Alt used a few McDonald’s burgers and a few of his own homemade burgers. Storing them in different packages. According to Lopez-Alt his experiment showed:
“Turns out that not only did the regular McDonald’s burgers not rot, but the home-ground burgers did not rot either. Samples one through five had shrunk a bit (especially the beef patties), but they showed no signs of decomposition. What does this mean?”
“It means that there’s nothing that strange about a McDonald’s burger not rotting. Any burger of the same shape will act the same way.”
The infatuation with holding on to old McDonald’s food for years is nothing new. In Iceland, “the last McDonald’s burger” sold in that country is on display in a museum. It also looks about the same as the day it came off the grill.
In 2009 before the McDonald’s restaurants closed throughout the country, the last burger to come off the grill in Iceland was saved as a memory from back in the days when the fast-food giant served food in that nation. Today that burger is under glass in the National Museum.
Perhaps the most famous of all McDonald’s old food is the burger purchased in 1999 by David Whipple. When it hadn’t decomposed or changed form in anyway 15-years later, it became headline news. According to MSN News, Whipple’s McDonald’s food still holds the record for the “longest-running untouched McDonald’s meal.”