Food & Drink

Man’s McDonalds burger didn’t decompose after six years - which is both brilliant and terrifying


The Hamburglar needs to step up his game.

When McDonald’s announced it was shutting down its Icelandic restaurants following 2009’s financial crisis, anthropologist Hjörtur Smárason visited one of the venues before they closed their doors for a final meal and then preserved it in its majesty by keeping it uneaten for six years.

Aside from the missed opportunity for McDonaldland’s once illustrious supervillain, however, something bizarre happened to the contents of that cheeseburger and fries, left alone for the better part of 2100 days: they didn’t age.

Not in the looks department anyway, appearing almost as appetising as the day it was greased up and shoved in a box. Fortunately, however, it didn't look quite good enough to eat as it was recently put up for display at Reykjavik's Bus Hostel, where people can visit 'The Last McDonald's Cheeseburger sold in Iceland’.

While locals have long been aware of the meal’s existence, only now thanks to the power of the internet is this marvel being brought to the attention of the world. Though it's not the only example of McDonald’s food failing to decompose after long periods of time.

Even McDonald's itself has attempted to debunk the myth surrounding its sturdy food, writing on its official website:

In the right environment, our burgers, like most other foods, could decompose. But, in order to decompose, you need certain conditions – specifically moisture. Without sufficient moisture – either in the food itself or the environment – bacteria and mold may not grow and therefore, decomposition is unlikely. So if food is or becomes dry enough, it is unlikely to grow mold or bacteria or decompose.  Food prepared at home that is left to dehydrate could see similar results. Look closely, the burgers you are seeing are likely dried out and dehydrated, and by no means “the same as the day they were purchased. The reality is that our burgers are made only with 100% USDA inspected beef. There are no preservatives or fillers in our patties and the only thing ever added is a touch of salt and pepper on the grill.

Sounds legit. Although they didn’t make any mention of the secret sauce forged from plutonium.