A McDonald's hamburger bought in 1995 and kept in an Australian shed for years has never broken down, according to two men who now refer to the quarter-century Quarter Pounder as their "mate."
Casey Dean, 39, and Eduards Nits, 38, claim they ordered the Quarter Pounder with cheese at a McDonald's store in Adelaide as teenagers – and always cling to it.
"As teenagers, we ordered a truckload of food, and it was too much," Dean told AFP. "It started a chain of events where we played & # 39; imagine if we kept it forever & # 39; and here we are."
Although the hamburger has shrunk somewhat from its original size, its shape remains intact, there are no signs of mold and it does not smell.
"Even the sesame seeds are still there, only a few have been dropped," Dean said.
Men say their relationship with the Quarter Pounder will last 25 years until November 2020, a milestone many marriages have not yet reached.
"We've been talking about taking him back to his place of birth, just go see the team there and see if he recognizes anyone," Dean said.
Nicknamed him "Senior Burger" and repeatedly referring to him as "mate," the men created social media profiles for the hamburger and even wrote a song about him.
They believe it is the oldest known McDonald's hamburger in the world, surpassing a major ten-year-old cheeseburger displayed in a glass box in Iceland and broadcast live online to thousands of viewers.
Storage of the old Australian hamburger has been less considered, although it was kept locked and locked in a wooden and cardboard box.
The box spent about a decade mixed with clothes inside a shed in Adelaide, where temperatures regularly exceed 30 degrees Celsius in summer.
When they finally checked in, Dean said even rats had turned their noses around.
"The mice actually ate the plastic bag, assembled clothes, got into the box and left the hamburger," he said.
"Our mate was safe."
Dean said he understood why some might be skeptical of his claims, but argues that old-school packaging – wax paper and a cardboard ring – accurately dates the hamburger until the mid-1990s.
He is convinced that the pair would never part with him, despite receiving offers from around the world when he caught the public's attention in 2015.
A McDonald's spokeswoman did not dispute the claim, saying that the question of why some of her hamburgers did not deteriorate arose "from time to time," but there was a "simple explanation."
"The reason our hamburgers sometimes don't mold when left out at room temperature in a dry environment is that once the food is cooked, there's not enough moisture to support bacterial growth and break it down," she said.
"Instead, it simply dries."
She advised that the best way to enjoy company food was "when it's hot and tasty."