I love McDonald’s burgers and fries, but this article caught my attention. Apparently a McDonald’s hamburger and a Taco Bell taco have enough preservative contained in them to keep them looking almost fresh after 2 years! This food embalming is possible thanks to a preservative called calcium probinate. Before we look into what that special indredient is here’s an excerpt from the article that caught my attention:
Have you ever wondered how long an untouched fast food meal could survive? One fast food meal on display at a Waterford chiropractic clinic is celebrating its second anniversary.
The meal sitting on the counter at Vaughn Chiropractic consists of a McDonald’s cheeseburger, fries and a Taco Bell soft shell chicken taco.
Two years ago Dr. Jaqueline Vaughn bought the meal and put it on the reception desk without a cover.
She notes there are no bugs, “there is no smelling, no decay, the only issue that we’ve had is people are so intrigued by it they’ll pick it up and because the bun now is so … almost mummified.”
Source: CBS Detroit
Ok, so what is this calcium probinate?
I found a slew of articles explaining what it is and what it is used for. Fortunately I did not come across anything causing me great concern. In fact, I may start stirring some of the powder in with my morning orange juice to help keep me from aging any further.
Here’s an excerpt from WiseGeek:
Risks and Side Effects
Some governmental organizations and food safety committees have described this compound as slightly toxic, but this rating is actually fairly common for food additives, particularly those that are only used in very small amounts. Toxicity generally requires far larger quantities of the chemical that could ever be eaten at once, even if vast quantities of treated products were consumed together. In food, it is added in concentrations of ranging from 0.1 to 0.4%, while in feed concentrations can be as high as 1%.
In most cases, the body breaks down the calcium from the propionic acid and then processes it as a fatty acid. It is not stored in the body, and doesn’t usually contribute to any sort of long term or degenerative conditions.
I’m OK with my occasional McD’s burger and fries again….