Tuesday, October 12, 2010

The Indestructible Happy Meal and the Filthy Restaurant High Chair

Posted By on Tue, Oct 12, 2010 at 10:34 AM

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Is there something in the air? Because it seems like we here at Gut Check International Headquarters have been filing more items than usual in our WTF? category.

Today, the Daily Mail provides two interesting items.

First, there is the Happy Meal Project, in which New York City artist Sally Davies has photographed the same McDonald's Happy Meal every day for almost six months. The results show that the burger and fries have barely decomposed.

Second, a new study compares the level of bacteria on restaurant high chairs to the level in restaurant toilets.

The fact that this is news should tell you which of the two is dirtier:
Teams took swabs from high chairs in 30 different restaurants and found that on average the number of bacteria on a high chair - including some which can lead to serious illness - was 147 per square centimetre.

By comparison the average public toilet seat has just eight per square centimetre. The bacteria found included E-coli. Staph aureus and enterococcus faecalis which can cause upset stomachs - a serious illness for young children.
Which of course raises the question: If you left a McDonald's Happy Meal on a restaurant high chair for six months, how badly would the Happy Meal decompose?

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