This Halloween, Burger King is treating its customers with a spooky Halloween Whopper—a twist on the classic hamburger that involves the beloved quarter-pound burger and toppings piled on a festive black bun. But this treat definitely comes with a trick: It’s turning people’s poop an eerie shade of green!
People are mostly amused by their technicolor turds. People tweeted about the burger with the hashtag #greenpoop and some even said that they bought the dish solely for its color-changing properties. One person thanked the fast food chain for finally letting them live out every ’80s kid’s dream of pooping like Slimer on Ghost Busters. And some are even posting toilet-bowl snaps as evidence, just in case people don’t believe them. (We believe you! We promise! You can stop anytime.)
But for those who are genuinely worried about how a black bun can turn your insides radioactive, Burger King says to stop being such a scaredy cat—the flavoring and food colorings are all cool under Food and Drug Administration (FDA) rules. What they’re not speaking up about, though, is the actual ingredients used in the bun. While the burger chain says they used charcoal and squid ink when they debuted the black burger last year in Asia, they’re keeping mum(my) about the secret sauce here.
Still, it doesn’t take much to guess that the crappy culprit is artificial food dye. Petroleum-based food dyes are legal in the U.S. and have a long history of turning people’s stools colors that would make even a unicorn-obsessed Lisa Frank fan cringe (one of many reasons that Europe has chosen to ban them). But the FDA lists most artificial food dyes as “GRAS”, or generally recognized as safe for human consumption.
The grossest part: Artificial food dyes are in a lot more than food—they also make up that green face paint you’re using for your witch costume. This year it looks like freaky fans just get to decide if they want to be green inside and out. (Eek.)