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HOAX – ‘Semen Found on McDonald’s Burger’

by Brett M. Christensen


Circulating report claims that a woman in Michigan found semen in the mayonnaise of a McDonald’s burger and caught herpes as a result of the contamination. 

Brief Analysis

The message is a hoax. No such incident occurred and it has not been confirmed by the Health Department as claimed. The warning is just a variant of a long running series of hoaxes that have falsely claimed that food at various eateries was contaminated with semen. And, herpes is spread via direct contact not via semen. The image in the hoax report is taken from an unrelated food blog post.


Health Department Confirmed Semen found on McDonald’s Mayonnaise

A woman in the state of Michigan was in disgusted when she had lunch last week at a local McDonald’s. The 31 year old, Lisa McDowell was having a bite to eat with her friends when she ordered a McChicken sandwich. She was halfway through with her sandwich when she noticed a clump of mayonnaise on the side of her bun. She licked it off, but when she tasted it she immediately realized things were not right.’ I’m not gonna lie,’ McDowell said. ‘On Birthdays and holidays I give my man a little something extra in the bedroom, you know? So when I licked the mayo off of the bun, the texture was familiar.’

McDonald's Semen in Burger Hoax


Detailed Analysis

According to a report that is currently making its way rapidly around the interwebs, a hapless woman in Michigan inadvertently ate semen concealed in the mayonnaise of a chicken burger she bought at a local McDonald’s store.

Supposedly, the woman realized the mayonnaise was contaminated after she recognized the ‘texture’ of the semen from past bedroom encounters. The report claims that subsequent Health Department testing confirmed that there were two types of semen in the mayonnaise. 
And, to make matters worse, claims the story, the woman contracted herpes after eating the tainted burger.

However, the report is nonsense. No such contamination incident occurred and it was not confirmed by the Health Department as claimed.

In fact, the story is just the latest incarnation of a long running series of hoaxes that go back to at least the 1980s. The hoaxes all relate the same basic story but set the supposed incident in different eateries. Earlier variants often featured Indian or Chinese restaurants.

A more recent version claimed that a woman got syphilis in her mouth after inadvertently eating semen-contaminated food at an Olive Garden restaurant in Iowa.

Not one of these circulating semen contamination scares is true.

A related series of hoaxes falsely claim that workers have deliberately added HIV infected blood or semen to food or drinks.

The bogus report includes a photograph that it claims depicts the semen contaminated chicken burger. However, the image was stolen from a 2012 food blog and has no connection whatsoever with the supposed contamination story.

Moreover, even if the woman had eaten semen-contaminated mayonnaise she would not have contracted herpes as a result. Herpes spreads via direct contact, not via bodily fluids.

The BeyondHerpes website notes:

Genital herpes is usually contracted from skin to skin contact with an infected area. The infection needs to be active on the skin’s surface for the infection to spread.

For example, if someone has a genital herpes infection they could pass the virus onto another person by touching or making contact with the active infected area, such as through vaginal, anal or oral sex, or by rubbing against the infection. Friction, heat and moisture, as well as a break or tear in the skin, could increase the chance of the herpes virus spreading.

Herpes is not spread by saliva, semen, blood or body fluids. It is also not spread through toilet seats or sharing the same bed.

And, a TeenClinic.org article concurs, noting:

Herpes is a virus that transmits through skin-to-skin contact. It does not transmit through semen, vaginal fluid, or blood-so no, it’s not possible to accidentally give yourself herpes by touching semen and then touching the mouth. In rare cases, it is possible to spread herpes by touching a genital sore and then quickly touching the mouth (or vice versa); however, herpes is fragile and this is unlikely.

These false tales add to the myths and confusion surrounding sexually transmitted diseases and sharing them is counterproductive.

Importance Notice

After considerable thought and with an ache in my heart, I have decided that the time has come to close down the Hoax-Slayer website.

These days, the site does not generate enough revenue to cover expenses, and I do not have the financial resources to sustain it going forward.

Moreover, I now work long hours in a full-time and physically taxing job, so maintaining and managing the website and publishing new material has become difficult for me.

And finally, after 18 years of writing about scams and hoaxes, I feel that it is time for me to take my fingers off the keyboard and focus on other projects and pastimes.

When I first started Hoax-Slayer, I never dreamed that I would still be working on the project all these years later or that it would become such an important part of my life. It's been a fantastic and engaging experience and one that I will always treasure.

I hope that my work over the years has helped to make the Internet a little safer and thwarted the activities of at least a few scammers and malicious pranksters.

A Big Thank You

I would also like to thank all of those wonderful people who have supported the project by sharing information from the site, contributing examples of scams and hoaxes, offering suggestions, donating funds, or helping behind the scenes.

I would especially like to thank David White for his tireless contribution to the Hoax-Slayer Facebook Page over many years. David's support has been invaluable, and I can not thank him enough.

Closing Date

Hoax-Slayer will still be around for a few weeks while I wind things down. The site will go offline on May 31, 2021. While I will not be publishing any new posts, you can still access existing material on the site until the date of closure.

Thank you, one and all!

Brett Christensen,