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Could You Tell the Difference Between Organic and Fast Food? A New Viral Prank Vid Says Probably Not

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If you're like many health-conscious people out there, you've been avoiding fast food for decades—not just because it's bad for you but also because many of us think it tastes bland and over-processed compared to "whole foods." Yet two Dutch pranksters tested that last part when they snuck into a a gourmet food industry expo in Houten and set up a display taste-testing a "new organic alternative to fast food." The joke: Those platters of cut-up muffins, fruit, burgers, and nuggets were actually just regular old McD's. They were trying to see if people would simply believe what they were told about the food—that it was high-end, organic etc—or if they'd be able to taste the difference.

Before you watch the video, do you think you'd know if your Wagyu Angus burger with sweet tomato on a toasted roll was actually a dollar-menu slider?

(You can turn on the English subtitles by clicking on the settings button on the video)

The answer for most people is that unless maybe there was a Happy Meal toy next to the samples (which would be awesome because My Little Ponies make everything better), they had no clue where their food had come from.

One man, while gesticulating floridly, described a chicken nugget as medley of complex flavors adding "I feel some warmth releasing in my mouth." Another taste-tester enthused, "It rolls around the tongue nicely; if it were wine, I'd say it's fine." Several people said they could taste that it was "fresher" and "more pure" than fast food.

The funny part is all of these compliments were paid to the same nugget—which had to be cold and chewy by that point. Have you eaten a cold, chewy chicken nugget lately? It is none of those things. Surprisingly, the people even said the food tasted healthier and said they could tell it was better for them. So how could people (including us, most likely) be so fooled?

More than anything, this experiment is a testament to the power of the mind. When people believe something about a food, whether that it's delicious, healthy, or disgusting, their experience tends to confirm their expectations. Plus, presentation is everything. The pranksters took all the food out of the greasy wrappers and instead displayed it attractively on china dishes with little toothpicks, just like any other gourmet sample.

The smart-girl takeaway: Use the power of suggestion to your advantage by giving yourself pep talks before eating healthy food, and taking care to display it beautifully on your plate. Oh, and if you're going to order the nuggets, eat them when they're warm and crispy—and enjoy them for the splurge they are.


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