McDonald’s Shakes Are Made of Plastic-Fiction!


Summary of eRumor:

McDonald’s doesn’t call its shakes “milk shakes” because they don’t contain any milk. A man who was said to be a scientist told the writer of the email that he evaluated the ingredients in a McDonald’s shake and found that it consisted of “sugar infused plastic.”

The Truth:

McDonald’s has had to contend with rumors about bizarre ingredients in the meat in its hamburgers, which have not been true. Now its about McDonald’s shakes. has not found any credible source for the allegation that the shake consists of “sugar infused plastic.” Some versions of this rumor say the shake consists of “emulsified plastic.” We’ve not found any credible source for that either. The only origin for those claims is the rumor that has been passed around for decades.
Older ingredient lists from McDonald’s listed their vanilla shake, for example, as being comprised of whole milk, sucrose, cream, nonfat milk solids, corn syrup solids, mono and diglycerides, guar gum, imitation vanilla flavor, carrageenan, cellulose gum, vitamin A palmitate.

As of 9/19/2011, the official McDonald’s ingredient list called it a “milkshake.” It consisted of glucose syrup, water, natural flavor (vanilla extract), color (caramel, betacarotene), citric acid, potassium sorbate, and soybean oil.

We have not found any evidence of a law that demands an exact percentage of milk or fat in order to call it a “milkshake.”

updated 09/19/2011

A real example of the eRumor as it has appeared on the Internet:

Hey everyone,

So you are walking into a McDonalds store. You are waiting behind the guy who can’t make up his mind despite the fact that the menu is the same EVERY DAY, the entire 10-12 boys soccer team, and two teenagers whom you really can’t tell what planet they are from (but they sure aren’t from earth…. earthlings don’t put earring in certain places, it’s just not cricket.) Once you finally get to the front of the line, you look over the menu and make your order. Sit down, and watch in horror as it starts crawling away from you… oh wait, that’s Taco Bell.

But I bet you have never noticed that the milkshakes served at McDonals reads “Shakes” on the menu. It does not say “Milkshakes.” Check it out. I bet you’ve never noticed that before. Peculiar? Well, the reason that the menu does not say “milkshakes” is because (I swear I am not kidding) the shakes have more fat (36g) than what is legally allowed in a “milkshake” (25g) and therefore it is illegal for McDonalds to call them milkshakes. They instead have to be called “shakes.”

It is not legal to be called a milkshake?????? Why does such a law exist? Someone, who obviously cared a lot about this (Milkshake Fat Police?) decided that we needed to regulate rogue milkshake vendors who decided to put too much fat in their milkshakes. So they proposed this law to Congress, who decided that, since this was of absolutely no importance what so ever, that it was absolutely to spend millions of dollars in the congressional districts on milkshake research. People were probably brought in and paid to drink large quantities of regular milkshakes and McDonalds milkshakes. Invariably, everyone got fat, but apparently the people who drank McDonalds milkshakes got fatter faster. So then the findings were brought before congress, who apparently have put this on higher priority than Social Security and Medicare, because they have passed the milkshake law but have not fixed either of those programs.

So you may be asking yourself:
1) What should I do if I find an illegally named milkshake?
Answer: Do NOT drink it! It can make you dangerously fat! Be careful, sometimes looking at a “shake” will place celluite on your hips and thighs.

2)Who should I report it to?
Answer: Unfortunately, I have not found the location of the Milkshake Fat Police. If you need to, contact your local police. Their reaction should be priceless….

Another example:
Hi All,

Just thought you’d like to know….

Yesterday, at my store, I was talking with a regular customer who is a scientist of some sorts…and he asked me if I ever wondered why/how McDonald’s shakes never melted. He said he and his buddies decided to break down a shake in their lab one time and found that all it consisted of was sugar infused plastic.

He said that McDonald’s had to drop the word “milk” because it didn’t have any milk product in it…and when they did add it, by law, they were only required to add 2% of the shake a milk product to call it “milk shake” again.

He said all the shakes at the fast foods are the same except, I think, Burger King.

Pretty gnarly…