For some reason, McDonald's hamburgers are mysteriously unsusceptible to Mother Nature's inevitable toll of decomposition. Yep, you pretty much have to dip a McDonald's cheeseburger in acid if you want it to decompose. So we're left with the question: Why? Why does a McDonald's hamburger retain its original shape, color and texture after 12 years?
Lopez-Alt used the following variables to conduct a series of tests, using homemade burgers vs. McDonald's burgers:
- Sample 1: A plain McDonald's hamburger stored on a plate in the open air outside of its wrapper.
- Sample 2: A plain burger made from home-ground fresh all-natural chuck of the exact dimensions as the McDonald's burger, on a standard store-bought toasted bun.
- Sample 3: A plain burger with a home-ground patty, but a McDonald's bun.
- Sample 4: A plain burger with a McDonald's patty on a store-bought bun.
- Sample 5: A plain McDonald's burger stored in its original packaging.
- Sample 6: A plain McDonald's burger made without any salt, stored in the open air.
- Sample 7: A plain McDonald's Quarter Pounder, stored in the open air.
- Sample 8: A homemade burger the exact dimension of a McDonald's Quarter Pounder.
- Sample 9: A plain McDonald's Angus Third Pounder, stored in the open air
To read more about how Lopez-Alt came to his conclusion, click through. But the short answer is:
"The small size of a McDonald's hamburger is allowing it to dehydrate fast enough that there is not enough moisture present for mold to grow."