Chicken Little: Study Finds Nuggets Contain No More Than 50 Percent Chicken Meat And The Rest Are Chicken Guts, Bone, And Nerves

230px-Fast_food_chickenJust after getting over the Taco Bell meat scandal, we have another (though not exactly surprising) scandal involving Chicken nuggets.  A study in the American Journal of Medicine found that nuggets from two unnamed fast food chains that they analyzed consisted of 50 percent or less actual chicken muscle tissue.  The first nugget was half muscle and the rest was  fat, blood vessels and nerves. Close inspection revealed cells that line the skin and internal organs.  The second nugget was only 40 percent meat and  the remainder was fat, cartilage and pieces of bone.

Of course, the National Chicken Council (NCC) was quick to object.  “Chicken nuggets are an excellent source of protein, especially for kids who might be picky eaters,” said Ashley Peterson, vice president of scientific and regulatory affairs for the NCC.  I wonder how picky they will be when they learn that they are eating nerves and chicken guts.  However, Peterson insists that there are billions of nuggets sold each year and the study only took two from two different national chains.  It is not clear how many nuggets would be viewed as sufficient for NCC or why both nuggets showed the same basic problem.

As for the fat content, Peterson insists “it’s no secret what is in a chicken nugget.”

The study is entitled  “The Autopsy of Chicken Nuggets Reads ‘Chicken Little'”. The researchers also found bone in the samples.

In the meantime, the Vice President of Scientific and Regulatory Affairs for the National Soylent Council (NSC) is responding to another study by releasing a statement that the researcher below only saw one factory and “it’s no secret what is in soylent green.”

Source: CBS

33 thoughts on “Chicken Little: Study Finds Nuggets Contain No More Than 50 Percent Chicken Meat And The Rest Are Chicken Guts, Bone, And Nerves”

  1. “And..that would be your partner in the wood chipper.” Margie Gunderson

    My favorite female character EVER. McDormand won and deserved the Oscar.

  2. OS,
    Thank you for not publishing the Haggis recipe! I haven’t eaten lunch yet! 🙂

  3. if you go in supermarkets you sometimes cannot even find chicken w/ bones, except for wings. “Closer the bone, the sweeter the meat.” Is there better meat than that beef closest to the bone on a T-Bone?

  4. Stroud’s! Better than sex. We had going away dinners there several times.

  5. A few years ago, I read Michael Pollan’s book “The Omnivore’s Dilemma.”
    In it,he explains what goes into a MacDonald’s chicken McNugget.

    So What Really Is In A McDonald’s Chicken McNugget?

    Most folks assume that a chicken nugget is just a piece of fried chicken, right? Wrong! Did you know, for example, that a McDonald’s Chicken McNugget is 56% corn?

    What else is in a McDonald’s Chicken McNugget? Besides corn, and to a lesser extent, chicken, The Omnivore’s Dilemma describes all of the thirty-eight ingredients that make up a McNugget ­ one of which I’ll bet you’ll never guess. During this part of the book, the author has just ordered a meal from McDonald’s with his family and taken one of the flyers available at McDonald’s called “A Full Serving of Nutrition Facts: Choose the Best Meal for You.”

    These two paragraphs are taken directly from The Omnivore’s Dilemma:

    “The ingredients listed in the flyer suggest a lot of thought goes into a nugget, that and a lot of corn. Of the thirty-eight ingredients it takes to make a McNugget, I counted thirteen that can be derived from corn: the corn-fed chicken itself; modified cornstarch (to bind the pulverized chicken meat); mono-, tri-, and diglycerides (emulsifiers, which keep the fats and water from separating); dextrose; lecithin (another emulsifier); chicken broth (to restore some of the flavor that processing leeches out); yellow corn flour and more modified cornstarch (for the batter); cornstarch (a filler); vegetable shortening; partially hydrogenated corn oil; and citric acid as a preservative. A couple of other plants take part in the nugget: There’s some wheat in the batter, and on any given day the hydrogenated oil could come from soybeans, canola, or cotton rather than corn, depending on the market price and availability.

    According to the handout, McNuggets also contain several completely synthetic ingredients, quasiedible substances that ultimately come not from a corn or soybean field but form a petroleum refinery or chemical plant. These chemicals are what make modern processed food possible, by keeping the organic materials in them from going bad or looking strange after months in the freezer or on the road. Listed first are the “leavening agents”: sodium aluminum phosphate, mono-calcium phosphate, sodium acid pyrophosphate, and calcium lactate. These are antioxidants added to keep the various animal and vegetable fats involved in a nugget from turning rancid. Then there are “anti-foaming agents” like dimethylpolysiloxene, added to the cooking oil to keep the starches from binding to air molecules, so as to produce foam during the fry. The problem is evidently grave enough to warrant adding a toxic chemical to the food: According to the Handbook of Food Additives, dimethylpolysiloxene is a suspected carcinogen and an established mutagen, tumorigen, and reproductive effector; it’s also flammable.

    But perhaps the most alarming ingredient in a Chicken McNugget is tertiary butylhydroquinone, or TBHQ, an antioxidant derived from petroleum that is either sprayed directly on the nugget or the inside of the box it comes in to “help preserve freshness.” According to A Consumer’s Dictionary of Food Additives, TBHQ is a form of butane (i.e. lighter fluid) the FDA allows processors to use sparingly in our food: It can comprise no more than 0.02 percent of the oil in a nugget. Which is probably just as well, considering that ingesting a single gram of TBHQ can cause “nausea, vomiting, ringing in the ears, delirium, a sense of suffocation, and collapse.” Ingesting five grams of TBHQ can kill.”

  6. Nal,

    Caine’s (a Southern chain) does a similar thing with their chicken strips. “Fresh not frozen” and “real chicken” are their selling points, but they don’t have a nugget offering. There are plenty of local joints nationwide that serve real chicken, like Stroud’s in KC and Lucy’s in Austin. To me, McNuggets were targeting kids (and adults) who don’t know from over processed junk to begin with. I recently read an article that was about the growing trend in mid-scale restaurants like Applebee’s and Chili’s to put nuggets on the menu. The reason stated? A generation of kids who grew up thinking nuggets were real food and don’t like bones.

  7. If you’ve been eating chicken nuggets, you don’t care what you put in your stomach, anyway.

  8. “Parts is Parts” sayeth the fast food industry.

    Advertisement: “Our BBQ sandwiches are made with 100% pure pork”
    Truth: “100% pork, from snout to arse hole.”

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