Don't Bite On Flesh-Eating Banana Hoax
Posting Date: 02/03/2000
If you?ve gotten an e-mail about imported bananas that contain flesh-eating bacteria, forget it and don?t pass it on, it isn?t true. It?s another urban rumor that is making the rounds.
Reading this hoax message makes me suspicious that one person is writing a lot of these urban rumors because there are always similarities in the language. For example, most of these deceptive e-mails contain the phrases, "This is not a joke," and "Please forward this to as many people that you care about as possible."
This specific hoax says bananas from Costa Rica are infected with bacteria that can devour human flesh at two to three centimeters per hour. It adds that if you get infected you should burn your flesh ahead of the infected area, which is also ridiculous. Burning the flesh would only make it more susceptible to infection.
This scare message calls the disease necrotizing fasciitis, which is a real, but rare disease that attacks soft tissues under the skin, and may cause gangrene. But, this disease doesn?t graft itself onto the skin of fruits.
The report on the "flesh-eating-disease" claims to come from the Manheim Research Institute, which doesn?t appear to exist. When I tried to call a number listed, I was disconnected because the voice mail was full.
At any rate, don?t worry about eating bananas from Costa Rica. You?re not going to be eaten in return.