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Top 10 Wildest McDonald's Myths

VO: Rebecca Brayton WRITTEN BY: Savannah Sher
When you have a company of this size, there’s bound to be some misinformation about it. For this list, we’re looking at the most popular rumors and urban legends about this fast food chain, and examining whether there’s any truth behind them. WatchMojo counts down the Top 10 Wildest McDonald's Myths. Special thanks to our user Nathaniel Rios for suggesting this idea! Check out the voting page at https://www.WatchMojo.comsuggest/Top+5+Mcdonalds+Myths.
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Script written by Savannah Sher

Top 10 Wildest McDonald's Myths


When you have a company of this size, there’s bound to be some misinformation about it. Welcome to WatchMojo and today we're counting down our picks for the Top 10 Wildest McDonald's Myths.

For this list, we’re looking at the most popular rumors and urban legends about this fast food chain, and examining whether there’s any truth behind them.

#10: The Pink Slime

We all know that the food at McDonald’s isn’t considered health food, so maybe it’s better not to know exactly what goes into it. You probably remember, though, when stories surfaced about a truly disgusting looking pink slime that was allegedly used to make both the hamburgers and chicken nuggets at McDonald’s. In 2011, celebrity chef Jamie Oliver petitioned to have ammonium hydroxide (which is the scientific name what’s used to create the slime) removed from the process and succeeded. So while this one used to be true, your Big Macs have actually been slime-free for years.

#9: Pig Fat Shakes

As a vegetarian, it can be hard to eat fast food because you never really know what’s in some of the menu items. For a time, many questioned whether some of McDonald’s’ most popular items were actually free of animal products like they appeared to be. The rumor was that there was pig fat or lard in things like the milkshakes, fries and soft serve ice cream, which would have put off a whole lot of meat-free eaters. There doesn’t seem to be any basis to this myth, although people might be confused with the fact that prior to 1990, the fries were cooked in beef tallow.

#8: Choko Pie

One of the Golden Arches’ most beloved desserts is their apple pie, which has been on the menu in a variety of iterations since the 1960s. In Australia, however, there was a rumor that these little hand pies were made not with apples but with choko. Never heard of choko? Also known by the name chayote, this fruit is a gourd that is part of the Cucurbitaceae family. We can’t imagine what the basis of this myth was, and McDonald’s has firmly stated that they use Granny Smith apples exclusively. People have also speculated that the pies are made with potatoes, but we think we would have noticed that.

#7: Worm Burgers

As probably their most popular menu items, McDonald’s’ hamburgers are perhaps the product that has received the most scrutiny over the years. The company has been accused of adding some crazy things to its beef patties, but one of the most bizarre suggestions is that there are worms in the mix. Since the ‘70s, people have speculated that the fast food chain opted for earthworms as “cheap filler” in their burgers. Not true. Ray Kroc himself even said that this concept was preposterous because, according to him, worms are more expensive than beef anyway!

#6: Kangaroo Meat

Earthworms aren’t the only substance rumored to go into a McDonald’s burger. Because of all the rumors swirling around their production process, McDonald’s offers a question and answer section on their website. Canadian McDonald’s fan Michael P. asked how much kangaroo meat was in each burger (not if there was any, but how much!) and the company offered this tongue-in-cheek response. We’re not sure why anyone would imagine that they would cook their burgers using kangaroo, seeing as it’s a much pricier option than good old beef…! The things people come up with!

#5: Cow Eyeballs

People never seem to run out of things that they imagine are in McDonald’s burgers. One rumor that has been bandied around for years is that the chain uses offcuts of meat or even cow eyeballs as filler in their burgers. According to the USDA, though, beef byproducts (including eyeballs) must be disclosed on labels, so if there were eyes in their burgers, we would definitely know about it. Also, like the worms, it turns out that cow eyes are actually very expensive. They are pretty sought after because they’re used for scientific research!

#4: The Playgrounds Are Being Converted to Weed-Smoking Lounges

If this one sounds totally outlandish and unbelievable, it’s because it’s totally not true. Some fake news sites began reporting in 2015 that McDonald’s restaurants in Colorado were converting their kiddie play areas to rooms or special smoking pods where patrons could smoke marijuana. Because the state had recently legalized the drug, people bought this one, even though it doesn’t actually have any basis in truth. Sorry stoners, this one is 100% false!

#3: McDonald’s Food Never Rots

One of the most pervasive myths about McDonald’s food is actually one that is largely true – except that it doesn’t just apply to McDonald’s food. Several people have performed experiments over the years in an effort to show that McDonald’s food doesn’t go bad. Burgers and fries examined years after they were purchased look almost unchanged and don’t have any mold or visible signs of rotting. The thing is, though, further experiments have shown that just about any combination of beef and bread will act the exact same way. Why? Basically because it dries out quickly and therefore preserves itself. Oh yeah, and McDonald’s burgers also are not indestructible.

#2: "100% Beef" Is a Brand Name

Another commonly held belief about McDonald’s that is completely false is that the chain uses the company name “100% beef” in order to be able to use the phrase in their marketing. The claim is that their burgers are NOT made from 100% real beef, and therefore they can lie about it using this trick. The reality, though, despite how unbelievable it may seem, is that McDonald’s burgers really are made with 100% real beef! They add salt and pepper, but there aren’t any preservatives nor are there any other fillers or additives. Now how do we figure out what makes them taste so darn good?

#1: Mutant Lab Meat

Sometimes, people can get really creative when it comes to making up rumors about their favorite (okay, maybe least favorite) fast food chains. In 2000, a rumor started online in Brazil that claimed that McDonald’s was keeping genetically modified animals in labs. These beasts were said to be bred specifically to be turned into meat for their menu items. The alleged witness to these atrocious creatures said that “they have no limbs or horns, no bones (undeveloped cartilage instead), no eyes, no tail and no fur; its head is about the size of a baseball; they are fed through tubes connected directly into their stomach." This is definitely horrifying, but it’s also definitely not true.


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