A shocking number of Americans actually believe chocolate milk comes from brown cows
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A survey has revealed you should be even more disappointed in humankind than you first anticipated.
We all believe in some silly things when we're young. Take Santa, the Easter Bunny or the Tooth Fairy - I hate to break it to you if you didn't already know a Tinkerbell-like being doesn't actually creep under your pillow and pay you for going through something as minor as losing a tooth. However, this really takes the biscuit.
A survey has shown a shocking amount of people in the US believe chocolate milk comes from - wait for it - brown cows.
I wish I was joking, but I'm not. It's truly the sort of news which makes you weep and nearly give up on humanity altogether.
The Innovation Center of US Dairy alongside Edelman Intelligence conducted a survey to see if American adults - yes, adults - know where chocolate milk comes from.
According to Undeniably Dairy's 'Dairy Good' website campaign: "
"The purpose of the survey was to gauge some interesting and fun facts about consumers' perceptions of dairy, not a scientific or academic study intended to be published.
"While the study wasn't intended for public consumption, it is statistically valid. The study polled 1,000 American adults online between 5 May and 9 May, 2017. Responses came from all 50 states, and the regional response breakdown was fairly even."
Depressingly, seven percent of the country - which may sound minor, but actually totals a whopping 16.4 million people - believe chocolate milk isn't made by cocoa, sugar and milk, but comes straight out of the udder of a brown cow.
To put that even more into perspective, 16.4 million people is around the equivalent of the population of Cambodia, Chad or Senegal.
Or if we're sticking to the US, the amount of people who believe chocolate milk comes from brown cows is around double the current population of New York.
To make matters worse, the misinformation around food doesn't end there.
In 1993, it was found nearly a fifth of adults didn't realise beef is the main ingredient in hamburgers, as discovered by the Department of Agriculture.
Slightly more acceptable, but still fairly shocking, is a qualitative agriculture study on what elementary school students know about food systems.
The study revealed four out of 10 fourth, fifth and sixth-graders didn't realise cows are used to make hamburgers and three in 10 didn't know milk is used to make cheese.
Over half of the elementary school students didn't realise onions and lettuce are plants and that pickles are small cucumbers which have simply been placed in brine or vinegar.
While seven percent of Americans were found to believe chocolate milk comes from brown cows, 48 percent of respondents said they don’t know where chocolate milk comes from - whether that makes the results of the survey better or worse who knows.
The survey isn't verified or publicly released either, so maybe there's hope the misinformation isn't quite as bad as it seems.
Either way, co-founder of non-profit organisation Food Corps which 'connects kids to healthy food in school,' Cecily Upton told The Washington Post: "At the end of the day, it’s an exposure issue.
"Right now, we’re conditioned to think that if you need food, you go to the store. Nothing in our educational framework teaches kids where food comes from before that point. We still get kids who are surprised that a french fry comes from a potato.
"[...] Knowledge is power. Without it, we can't make informed decisions."
Featured Image Credit: Felix Choo / Alamy Stock Photo/sheryl caston / Alamy Stock Photo
Topics: Animals, Food And Drink, US News