In what can only be summed up with, "Wow, that's slightly disturbing," an experiment to see what would happen if a McDonald's Happy Meal was left out for a year seems to have gone terribly...right? Sure, the meat shriveled and the bun went completely stale, but the meal seemed to still hold the properties prime for a photo shoot. Eating it now would not be in anyone's best interest, but that should go without saying.
PARKER, Colo. - A Colorado woman is capturing international attention after she posted a blog documenting the life of a McDonald's Happy Meal.
Nutrition author Joann Bruso claims she stored the Happy Meal on her book shelf for exactly one year. But rather than molding or decaying, the meal still looks perfectly preserved.
"You would think you could eat it," says Joann.
But even Joann admits the meal stayed looking 'happy' a lot longer than she expected.
"I expected it to last. I didn't expect it to look that good."
And while the bun is hardened, the meat is shriveled, and the fries 'froze' up, the meal still looks pretty good.
Joann is using the meal as an example when she did speaking events about nutrition. But she says that when she realized the Happy Meal had turned one-year-old in March 2010, she decided to write about it on her web site.
Joann's blog has now created McMadness across the globe. More than 70,000 people have clicked on it. So many -in fact- that her web server crashed three times just over the weekend.
"I think it's the gross, yuck factor that has captured people's imaginations," says Joann.
McDonalds sent us a statement which says in part, the claim is "completely unsubstantiated."
"McDonalds hamburgers are made with 100% USDA inspected ground beef."
And the company cited a food safety scientist who says "no hamburger would look like this after one-year unless it was tampered with or held frozen."
Joann insists she never tampered with the burger.
"It never went in the freezer and I wouldn't know how to tamper with it to make it look like that after a year."
She says her one-year-old Happy Meal was only supposed to be food for thought, even if it's hard to digest it.