Jasmine Roberts did a middle school science project about fast food ice that brought her awards and the outcomes were scary. The project received a lot of attention due to the fact that it showed that ice from fast food restaurants is so dirtier, that it passes even toilet water, and that’s 70 percent of the time.
When she was 12, Jasmine Roberts took samples of fast food ice from 5 South Florida restaurants. She collected them from drive through windows as well as self-serve machines. And then she gathered samples from toilet water from those restaurants too. Afterwards she took the samples to the University of South Florida and had them tested for bacteria.
In most of the results, the samples tested positive for E. coli bacteria. These bacteria are usually associated to a lot of sickness epidemics throughout the states and it comes from human waste.
Dr. David Katz is a medical contributor for “Good Morning America” and also helped on the research. This is what he had to say: “These [bacteria]do not belong there. It’s not cause for panic, although it is alarming due to the fact that what she found is nothing new. You’re not likely to get sick now. However, she’s done us a favor by sounding the alarm.”
The fast food ice is probably dirtier due to machines not being cleaned regularly as well as because people have unwashed hands scooping the ice. Contrary to popular belief, toilet water comes from clean city water supplies and is in fact bacteria-free.
Jasmine Roberts got interested in the issue after she read about bacteria in a news article and got really interested about doing something alike, also having chewing ice as pet peeves thanks to her friends who do it continuously.
Her interest in science was influenced by her older brother Justus, who, like his sister, has won lots of science-fair awards. He said he is very supportive of her projects. “I give her a high five, then said, ‘You’re a strange little kid.’ But I supported her all the way.”
Robert’s project about junk food ice spread around that even got noticed by the restaurants and they right away acted by bringing in new sanitary policies and have gone as far as asking her to come back to the restaurants to take new samples and do new tests.
Roberts is very proud of her project and what it has achieved. “First they appreciated the project. And one area even asked me to come back and test the temperature of their food.”
After Jasmine’s findings, people started their own investigations. Here is what happened.