Clear Lab, a foods ingredients analytics startup has uncovered some startling truths about American hot dogs brands, and some of the facts it obtained would cause the most ardent consumer of hot dogs to cringe.
The foods research company tested 345 brands of hot dog from 75 different food brands and concluded after the research that 14.4% of hot dogs are plain problematic in some way.
The researchers found that many hot dogs labeled as vegetarian actually contain meat, and those labeled as kosher contain pork among other meats like chicken. But the most astonishing fact is that human DNA is found in about two-thirds of vegetarian-labelled hot dogs.
Using new test technology to get to the molecular levels of food ingredients, the lab found some hot dogs contain 2% of human DNA while others contain subliminal levels of allergens and additives that conventional food tests would miss.
According to Clear Lab, 3% of hot dogs that claimed to not have pork actually contain pork and even chicken products. And some which are made for vegetarians contain an exaggerated amount of protein, and 10% of vegetarian samples contain the meat of various kinds.
Clear Lab was also able to rate the best producers of hot dogs for each class of consumers, rating Trader Joes’s Soy Chorizo as the best hot dog for vegetarians.
The National Hot Dog and Sausage Council disclosed that about Americans consume about 20 billion hot dogs every year and spend an average of $2.5 billion on hot dogs per year, and a further $2.74 billion on dinner sausages, and also over $500 million on breakfast sausage annually.
Being a new startup, Clear Lab looks forward to selling its food analysis services to companies that supply ingredients and products to food chain services, with a plan to establish a branch which will inform consumers of the detailed content of what they eat in foods they buy from fast food chains and grocery stores.
The company also intends to start releasing a monthly report that will score food brands on what they contain in terms of ingredients, nutrients, and other information that ought to be fully represented in their labels.